Agliotti, Selebi had a ‘friend­ship of gain’

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - NEWS -

JO­HAN­NES­BURG: Cheques with stubs marked “chief ”, “JS” and “c.o.p” were cashed and the money given to Glenn Agliotti, a for mer friend of once-top cop Jackie Selebi, who is on trial for cor­rup­tion, the High Court in Jo­han­nes­burg heard on Fri­day.

State wit­ness Martin Flint tes­ti­fied that he cashed the cheques for Agliotti, a con­victed drug traf­ficker and the ex-fi­ance of his daugh­ter Dianne Muller.

“(Agliotti) would say: ‘Martin make out a cheque, it is for cop or it is for chief,’ but I had no knowl­edge of what it meant,” Flint said as pros­e­cu­tor Ger­rie Nel showed him a va­ri­ety of cheque foils and stubs.

Flint iden­ti­fied his own hand­writ­ing on most of them and said he drew them up and cashed them on Agliotti’s in­struc­tions.

Asked by Nel who he thought the pay­ments went to, Flint replied: “Any­thing is pos­si­ble, M’lord. I have no per­sonal knowl­edge at all.

“I do not have any detailed knowl­edge who Mr Agliotti handed money to.”

The court heard that Flint wanted to re­tract his state­ment in a pre­vi­ous af­fi­davit that the “c.o.p” stood for pay­ments Agliotti gave to a re­tired po­lice- man who had been in a car ac­ci­dent.

He said the prose­cu­tion had re­cently pointed out to him that the dates of the cheques and the time that he re­mem­bered the po­lice­man, a Mr Bezuiden­hout, com­ing to cer­tain offices did not add up.

Pre­vi­ously, Agliotti told the court he gave the for­mer po­lice com­mis­sioner the nick­names “Jax” and “Chief ”.

Flint tes­ti­fied that he thought JS stood for John Stratton, a busi­ness as­so­ciate of slain min­ing mag­nate Brett Keb­ble.

“The only JS that comes to mind was John Stratton. We were at the time work­ing with John Stratton.”

Dur­ing cross-ex­am­i­na­tion by de­fence lawyer Jaap Cil­liers, Flint em­pha­sised this was his own un­der­stand­ing.

“When I wrote it, I in­ter­preted it as John Stratton. I think I made that in­ter­pre­ta­tion my­self,” he said.

Dur­ing his ev­i­dence, Flint detailed how the ac­count of his com­pany, Spring Lights, was used by Keb­ble, Stratton and Agliotti.

Agliotti pre­vi­ously tes­ti­fied that he asked Keb­ble and Stratton for a $1 mil­lion “con­sul­tancy fee” for ac­cess to Selebi.

“Money came into the ac­count from JCI, an­other as­so­ciate com­pany, Heath and As­so­ci­ates, RA Keb­ble and Agliotti him­self.

“I was re­spon­si­ble in the main for the mak­ing out and sign­ing of the cheques. How­ever the in­struc­tion for that al­ways came from Agliotti.”

Flint said that once in­ves­ti­ga­tions be­gan in the case, he pre­pared a pay­ment anal­y­sis from the ac­count when re­quested to do by KPMG.

Be­fore he be­gan giv­ing ev­i­dence, Flint was told he could re­ceive Sec­tion 204 in­dem­nity against cor­rup­tion, fraud, theft and money laun­der­ing charges if he was found to tes­tify “hon­estly and frankly”.

Flint also painted a pic­ture of a much poorer Agliotti when his daugh­ter, Dianne Muller, met him in 1993, than the one al­leged to have later pur­chased lux­ury gifts for Selebi.

“He is not the per­son who ap­peared in this court. When I met him he drove a bat­tered Nis­san and wore clothes from Edgars.

“He was a dif­fer­ent per­son from the one that now is ac­cused of some­what heinous crimes.”

Dur­ing Muller’s tes­ti­mony, she told the court Agliotti changed when he be­gan what she termed his “friend­ship of gain” with Selebi.

“Agliotti started to be­lieve that he was larger than life. That he could do any­thing. That the law could not touch him be­cause he was friends with the ac­cused,” she said.

At one point dur­ing his tes­ti­mony, Flint be­came emo­tional at his fam­ily’s in­volve­ment in the case.

“You live your life in a cer­tain way and you have cer­tain stan­dards; and th­ese stan­dards get oblit­er­ated and you are not aware of that hap­pen­ing.”

On Mon­day an au­di­tor from KPMG is ex­pected to take the stand.

Selebi faces a charge of cor­rup­tion and an­other of de­feat­ing the ends of jus­tice in con­nec­tion with R1.2 mil­lion he al­legedly re­ceived from Agliotti and oth­ers in re­tur n for favours.

PIC­TURE: CHRIS COLLINGRIDGE

WIT­NESS: Martin Flint.

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