Charges may be dropped against 18 men accused of taxi assault - police

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Pretoria – Charges against 18 men accused of assaulting a taxi passenger in Sunnyside in August may be withdrawn, Pretoria police said on Wednesday.

According to Sunnyside police, the men had initially mistaken the victim, who was the only passenger at the time, for the taxi driver. 

The group of men, travelling in two minibuses, followed the taxi the victim was travelling in before allegedly assaulting him, police spokesperson Daniel Mavimbela told News24.

It is unclear why the men were in pursuit of the taxi. 

When police arrived at the scene, the man had been badly injured and was rushed to the hospital. He sustained cuts to his head and hands and was stabbed in the back. The taxi driver had apparently fled the scene.

The group of men, aged between 32 and 70, were arrested three hours after the incident and have since been released on R2 000 bail each.  

They appeared in the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday on charges of assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm and theft. 

But the victim apparently issued a withdrawal statement on Wednesday, Mavimbela said.

In a statement read out in court, the victim implied that the suspects had agreed to pay his medical expenses if he agreed to drop the charges. 

The case was postponed to September 6 for mediation. 

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