Zuma could go on trial as early as May after Thales elects not to appeal court ruling

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Former president Jacob Zuma.
Former president Jacob Zuma.
Peter Foley - Pool/Getty Images

Former president Jacob Zuma could go on trial for corruption as soon as May this year – after his corruption co-accused, French arms company Thales, indicated that it will not be pursuing its legal challenge to the racketeering charge against it.

National Prosecuting Authority spokesperson Sipho Ngwema confirmed to News24 that Thales had notified the state it would not be appealing the Kwazulu-Natal High Court's emphatic dismissal of its argument that it should not have been charged with racketeering, the crime of being a knowing participant in an organised criminal enterprise.

"Indeed, we are pleased with the news that Thales has elected not to appeal the dismissal of its challenge to the racketeering charge. We are delighted also that the state and Thales are ready for trial fairly soon, in the next three months or so," Ngwema said.

"Let's get this show on the road. Hopefully, this now clears the way for the long-awaited case against Thales and former president Zuma to finally be heard and resolved."

Zuma and Thales are due back in the Pietermaritzburg High Court on 23 February, when the dates for the start of their trial are expected to be set.

The former president recently made it clear that he wants to go on trial as soon as possible.

This is a developing story.

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