Justice has prevailed, says Paul O'Sullivan after Kgomotso Phahlane dismissal

Private investigator Paul O'Sullivan. (Deaan Vivier, Gallo Images, Beeld, file)
Private investigator Paul O'Sullivan. (Deaan Vivier, Gallo Images, Beeld, file)
  • Former acting national police commissioner Kgomotso Phahlane has been dismissed from the South African Police Service. 
  • National police commissioner General Khehla Sitole says Phahlane has been the subject of internal investigations. 
  • The investigations reached a conclusion on Thursday.  

National police commissioner General Khehla Sitole says former acting national commissioner Kgomotso Phahlane was subjected to a series of internal investigations - pending the criminal proceedings instituted by the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) - which ultimately led to his dismissal.

"Those series of internal investigations reached a final conclusion yesterday [Thursday, 30 July]," Sitole said.

Sitole was speaking at the release of the 2019/2020 national crime statistics.

Police spokesperson Vish Naidoo told News24 that Phahlane was dismissed in terms of "SAPS disciplinary regulations".  

A signed letter dated 30 July, which News24 has seen, states: "It is common knowledge that the Lieutenant-General Phahlane has been found guilty of elements of dishonesty, which justify a sanction of dismissal. Lieutenant General Phahlane is therefore dismissed from the South African Police Service in line with Regulation 12(e) of the South African Police Service Regulation 2016."

In 2017, Phahlane was suspended by then police minister Fikile Mbalula, following allegations which impacted on his fitness to hold office. 

READ | A look back into the case against Phahlane

Speaking to News24 on Friday, forensic investigator Paul O'Sullivan said justice has prevailed. 

He said when he lodged a complaint with IPID in 2016, and opened a docket against Phahlane, he was "detained, tortured, my staff got kidnapped [and] offices raided multiple times". 

"It cost me R15 million in legal fees over the last five years," he said.

"Having a man sitting at home on a full salary for more than three years, which is R4.6 million he's received, and during the same period he hires expensive criminal lawyers, and Phahlane lodged court application after court application against me at taxpayers' expense.

"The lawyers were paid for by taxpayers and he brings an application to stop me from defaming and attacking him, and none of those applications bore fruit; he didn't get a single order against me.

"And while he was bringing these applications, he got dirty cops from North West province chasing me down, locking me up, raiding my offices [and] following me. What it has done is vindicate my stance against corruption and I will carry on," he said. 

In March 2019, Phahlane was arrested on charges stemming from an IPID investigation into an R86 million blue lights tender.

Phahlane, along with his co-accused - Lieutenant General Ramahlapi Johannes Mokwena, national divisional commissioner in charge of supply chain management, Brigadier James Ramanjalum, former Gauteng police commissioner Deliwe de Lange, Gauteng deputy police commissioner Major-General Brigadier Nombhuruza Lettie Napo and Major-General Ravichandran Pillay - face charges of corruption, fraud, forgery and uttering.

READ | Former acting national SAPS commissioner Khomotso Phahlane officially axed - reports

In February 2018, Phahlane and his wife, Beauty, were charged with corruption, fraud and money laundering for accepting hefty kickbacks, including vehicles, allegedly in exchange for the awarding of lucrative forensic equipment supply tenders to Forensic Data Analysts, owned by Keith Keating.

In December 2017, IPID investigators raided the homes of Keating and Phahlane following nearly a year of investigation.

However, in November 2018, charges against Phahlane were provisionally withdrawn in the Pretoria Specialised Commercial Crimes Court.

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