Restraint order granted in Cape top cops' corruption case

Former Western Cape police commissioner Arno Lamoer (left) and his lawyer arrive at court for his corruption case. (Jenna Etheridge, News24)
Former Western Cape police commissioner Arno Lamoer (left) and his lawyer arrive at court for his corruption case. (Jenna Etheridge, News24)

Cape Town - A provisional restraint order has been granted against former Western Cape police commissioner Arno Lamoer and his co-accused in their corruption case, it emerged on Tuesday.

The Asset Forfeiture Unit (AFU) brought the application under the Prevention of Organised Crime Act in November 2016.

Advocate Billy Downer told the Western Cape High Court that they were ready to start the trial in March and that witnesses had been subpoenaed.

However, some parties indicated the order had set them back. The State’s attitude was that the order made provision for them to apply for funds for living and legal expenses.

Lamoer and three brigadiers - Darius van der Ross, Sharon Govender and her husband Colin Govender - together with businessman Salim Dawjee, face 109 charges of corruption, racketeering, and money laundering involving R1.6m. All of them are out on bail.

Cash and expensive gifts

The high-ranking officers allegedly received cash and expensive gifts from Dawjee in exchange for special treatment.

Lamoer was appointed to the post in November 2010 and retired in November 2015. He had been in the service for 25 years.

The restraint order was limited to R179 912 for Dawjee, Towbars Cape CC and Towbars King CC; R75 524 for Lamoer; and R7 324 for Van der Ross.

The order against the Govenders, including their interests in annuities and gratuities from their pension fund, was limited to R1.37m.

On February 21, the parties will have a chance to argue why the provisional order should not be confirmed pending the outcome of the trial.

Lawyer William Booth, for Dawjee, said the provisional order came as a complete shock and had a “catastrophic impact” on the sale of his client’s property.

Judge Robert Henney advised the lawyers to apply to the curator to have funds released for legal representation. They were asked to draw up a timetable.

“I am not going to let the process of asset forfeiture delay this trial,” he said.

Mxolisi Getye, of the AFU, said the curator was concerned whether there was enough money in the relevant bank accounts.

“The curator said that all the bank accounts he had been able to trace have debit balances, which are negative balances,” he said.

“If the parties are talking about cash sitting in bank accounts then we might have a problem.”

Henney replied: “If they say their money is locked up in there, they must show you where they are.”

The court heard that the SA Police Service had decided to proceed with disciplinary hearings against the brigadiers last week.

Henney said police should be informed that the hearings must take place after hours, on the weekend, or during court recess, to ensure there were no delays in the court process.

The case was postponed to February 14 for another pre-trial hearing.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Lockdown For
DAYS
HRS
MINS
Voting Booth
When planning for the Black Friday sales do you:
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Save, research and plan ahead, preparing to make the most of it?
7% - 983 votes
Wait and see what looks like a good deal on the day?
14% - 1866 votes
Have no interest in spending more money this year?
79% - 10497 votes
Vote
ZAR/USD
15.20
(-0.59)
ZAR/GBP
20.27
(-0.19)
ZAR/EUR
18.10
(-0.50)
ZAR/AUD
11.19
(-0.55)
ZAR/JPY
0.15
(-0.72)
Gold
1809.28
(+0.07)
Silver
23.32
(-0.07)
Platinum
957.00
(-0.17)
Brent Crude
48.73
(+1.57)
Palladium
2385.00
(+2.67)
All Share
57923.69
(+0.31)
Top 40
53084.13
(+0.27)
Financial 15
11645.28
(+0.04)
Industrial 25
79993.34
(+0.20)
Resource 10
52790.93
(+0.35)
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes morningstar logo