Railway line theft: Case back in court in October

Mthuthuzeli Swartz and Syed Mohiudeen are appearing before the specialised commercial crimes court over the theft of 42 kilometres of railway line. (Joseph Chirume, GroundUp)
Mthuthuzeli Swartz and Syed Mohiudeen are appearing before the specialised commercial crimes court over the theft of 42 kilometres of railway line. (Joseph Chirume, GroundUp)

The fraud and theft case of the former acting CEO of the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) Mthuthuzeli Swartz and businessman Syed Nadhir Mohiudeen has been postponed again, to October 11.

Mohiudeen's name is usually spelt Mahuideen in the media (including on GroundUp), but in this report, the spelling on the charge sheet is used, GroundUp reports.

The matter is being heard in the Port Elizabeth Specialised Commercial Crimes Court.

Swartz and Mohiudeen are facing fraud charges involving R1.5m. They are accused of selling about 42km of railway line that belonged to the state. The railway line runs between Sterkstroom and Maclear in Eastern Cape.

Eastern Cape National Prosecuting Authority spokesperson Luxolo Tyali said the accused's lawyers asked for more time to study the docket, saying that they collected it on the morning of the court appearance.

"The latest postponement cannot be attributed to the State. They requested time to study its contents, hence the postponement to 11 October. The State is ready to prosecute."

Swartz refused to talk to GroundUp but his lawyer, Mike Cherry, said he was confident. Mohiudeen was not in court.

Cherry said previous postponements were brought about by the State, which wanted to add more charges.

"The State has to give us a full docket with all the charges. I haven't read it yet. This is why they granted the extension."

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