CHARGED!

Khuli Chana now faces at­tempted mur­der case

Sunday World - - Front Page - MZWANDILE kaBIZOKWAKHE and AMOS MANANYETSO

PO­LICE have con­firmed that they have charged rap­per Khuli Chana with at­tempted mur­der.

The mu­si­cian’s car was shot at sev­eral times by po­lice in Midrand in the early hours of Mon­day morn­ing.

The in­ci­dent sent shock­waves through­out the mu­sic in­dus­try and out­raged the pub­lic.

Po­lice had claimed Chana had failed to stop when flagged down by of­fi­cers. It has since emerged that po­lice mis­took his car for that of a sus­pect in a kid­nap­ping case.

Chana has de­nied ig­nor­ing po­lice and his man­age­ment have also de­nied ru­mours that the rea­son he failed to stop for po­lice was be­cause he was in pos­ses­sion of drugs.

Chana ’ s man­ager Re­filoe Ramo­gase said: “There were no drugs in Khuli’s car or on his per­son.

“The po­lice on scene did not find any il­le­gal sub­stances in his car or on his per­son. More­over, his med­i­cal re­port [for blood tests] clearly states that there was no ev­i­dence of al­co­hol or other [il­le­gal] sub­stances.

“This is ob­vi­ously yet an­other at­tempt to de­flect at­ten­tion from the true events of that evening dur­ing which a South African cit­i­zen was un­law­fully shot at dur­ing a botched SAPS op­er­a­tion.

“But are the po­lice say­ing they would al­low some­one on whom they have found drugs or who tried to kill them to just walk away?”

Chana ’ s pub­li­cist, Sheila Afari, said the rap­per was at the garage at that hour of the night be­cause he was go­ing to per­form at a club in Pre­to­ria at 1am.

Gaut­eng po­lice spokesman Bri­gadier Neville Malila con­firmed an at­tempted mur­der case against Chana had been opened and that no drugs were found.

A wit­ness at the scene at the Cal­tex fill­ing sta­tion along the N1 in Midrand told Sun­day World that Chana ’ s BMW 1-se­ries ar­rived just be­fore mid­night.

The driver, whom he did not recog­nise, got out, walked to the cof­fee shop and re­turned with a cup of cof­fee.

He didn’t im­me­di­ately get back into his car, ac­cord­ing to the wit­ness, in­stead he stood next to it while tex­ting on his cell­phone.

“A Car­avelle then ar­rived, later fol­lowed by a Chevro­let sedan,” he said. “The two oc­cu­pants of the Car­avelle used the toi­let; they didn’t go to the petrol pump.

“The Car­avelle left first, fol­lowed by the BMW – about 200m apart.

“Then I heard gun­fire but I could not see who was fir­ing but I did hear the screech­ing of tyres fol­lowed by a thud that didn’t sound like two cars col­lid­ing.”

The wit­ness did not wish to be iden­ti­fied af­ter he said he’d heard that the Le­banese mafia may have been in­volved.

Sun­day World has traced the events that cul­mi­nated in this in­ci­dent to a rob­bery in Bed­ford­view on Sun­day.

Four men burst into the home of busi­ness­man Ali Khatib Haji and his wife Naomi dis­guised as po­lice­men.

They hand­cuffed him, then ran­sacked his home steal­ing an un­spec­i­fied num­ber of Rolex watches, jew­ellery and his BMW 5- se­ries, in which they bun­dled him and drove off. Both were un­harmed.

The rob­bers al­legedly forced Haji to call his two busi­ness part­ners, known only as Brian and Mo­hammed, for a ran­som.

“They first de­manded R100 000, then R500 000 but the busi­ness­men ne­go­ti­ated them down to R200 000,” the po­lice source said.

The two men called the Bed­ford­view po­lice, and of­fi­cers went with them to the Cal­tex garage where the ex­change was sup­posed to take place. Two of­fi­cers lay on the floor be­tween the seats of the Car­avelle and some more of­fi­cers fol­lowed in the Chevro­let.

The plan was for the busi­ness­men to col­lect Haji’s car keys from the toi­let and leave the ran­som there.

When Chana started driv­ing off in his BMW, the po­lice al­legedly be­came sus­pi­cious, think­ing he was with the rob­bers who were de­mand­ing ran­som for Haji, and that is ap­par­ently how the rap­per ended up get­ting shot at.

Haji was re­leased on Mon­day.

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