Cops sued for torture
A Mokhotlong man, Sefokoane Motokoa, is claiming M350 000 for torture he allegedly suffered at the hands of the police.
Motokoa claims he was severely assaulted on 2 September 2007 by Mokhotlong police who were trying to recover a firearm local villagers alleged belonged to him.
Narrating his alleged ordeal before High Court judge, Maseshophe Hlajoane on Tuesday this week, Motokoa said he was left “disfigured” after being beaten by a gun nozzle by the police, hence his demand for compensation.
Motokoa also told the court he was humiliated and degraded by the police action on the fateful day and suffered injuries, which included a fracture on the right leg.
Through his lawyer, Advocate Motiea Teele, Motokoa is now demanding M140 000 for pain, shock and suffering; M150 000 for disfigurement; M50 000 for contumelia and M10 000 for medical expenses.
In his address before the court, Prosecutor Letsie Moshoeshoe said, “the plaintiff’s house had been besieged by villagers who had guns and were shouting thieves, thieves”.
When the police came, he add- ed, they found villagers pelting the plaintiff’s home with stones.
Motokoa was then arrested by constables Lerotholi Molahli and Mosito Mohloboli, the court was further told.
In the lawsuit, Motokoa has cited the Commissioner of Police and Attorney General as first and second respondents, respectively.
Advocate Motiele Teele, who is representing Motokoa in the case, however, accused Molahli of crippling his client.
“You did not just injure him; you disfigured his leg. This man was injured by a gun.
“Where did you hear that stones thrown by the villagers injured him?” asked Advocate Teele.
“You assaulted the man, and having done so, you want to cover-up and say there was a fight between the villagers, which led to his injuries.
You had no credible information that he had a gun. You should have been charged for a criminal offense. We argue that the defendants are liable for their said actions.”
Meanwhile, three witnesses have so far testified in the case, which was first heard briefly on Tuesday before Justice Hlajoane postponed it to yesterday. Justice Hlajoane then postponed the matter yesterday to 4 September 2015.