Terror-accused Thulsie twins remain behind bars

Johannesburg - The terror-accused Thulsie brothers will have to wait until August 15 to hear if their arrests were lawfully executed.

Their lawyer presented closing arguments in the Johannesburg Magistrate’s Court, in their application to have their arrests declared unlawful.

“You cannot arrest people on far-fetched allegations,” Anneline van den Heever told the court.

Brandon-Lee and Tony-Lee Thulsi, 23, sat quietly in the dock, only waving to family members as they were taken to the cells. If their application succeeded, they would avoid a bail application in which they had to prove exceptional circumstances existed to justify their release.   

Van den Heever said the twins’ right to be presumed innocent had been violated. She said investigating officer, Warrant Officer Wynand Olivier, could not explain what offence the brothers allegedly committed by trying to cross the border into Mozambique, in an apparent bid to get to Turkey.

They were allegedly on their way to Syria to meet members of terror group Isil.

Van den Heever said investigators gave multiple accounts of why the decision was made to arrest them.

“It is abundantly clear they had nothing more than third- and fourth-hand information. I submit there was not one iota of factual information.”

Magistrate Pieter du Plessis said he would hand down his ruling on August 15. The court was not sitting next week and he said he did not want to make a hasty decision.

The twins were allegedly plotting attacks on a US embassy and Jewish cultural sites in South Africa. They were arrested during raids in Newclare and Azaadville on Saturday July 9.

They face three counts of contravening the Protection of Constitutional Democracy Against Terrorist and Related Activities Act.

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