Phahlane case re­port will be key

Pretoria News - - FRONT PAGE - KHAYA KOKO

A FOREN­SIC re­port in the R84 mil­lion fraud mat­ter against former top cop Kho­motso Phahlane looks set to form the ba­sis of the State’s case against the former na­tional com­mis­sioner.

This came as the de­fence told the court that a date for the trial was im­mi­nent in the long-run­ning mat­ter.

The State’s case against Phahlane and other se­nior of­fi­cers re­lated to al­leged ten­der ir­reg­u­lar­i­ties in 2016 dur­ing the bid­ding process to in­stall, among oth­ers, blue lights, sirens and ra­dio equip­ment in Gaut­eng po­lice ve­hi­cles.

The other ac­cused are former Gaut­eng po­lice head Gen­eral Deliwe de Lange, Ma­jor-Gen­eral Nomb­hu­ruza Napo, who is Gaut­eng’s cur­rent deputy po­lice com­mis­sioner, Lieu­tenant-Gen­eral Ramahlapi Mok­wena, na­tional di­vi­sional com­mis­sioner for sup­ply chain man­age­ment, Bri­gadier Ravi Pil­lay and Bri­gadier James Ra­man­jalum, SAPS head of pro­cure­ment.

Yes­ter­day at the Jo­han­nes­burg Spe­cialised Com­mer­cial Crimes Court, sit­ting in Palm­ridge, State ad­vo­cate Richard Cha­bal­ala said the de­lays in the mat­ter, where the last ap­pear­ance was in De­cem­ber, was to al­low the pros­e­cu­tion to com­plete a foren­sic probe on the ac­cused.

This fol­lowed a “searc­hand-seizure” oper­a­tion on the home of Vimpie Man­thata, whose com­pany, In­stru­men­ta­tion for Traf­fic Law En­force­ment, al­legedly fraud­u­lently won the lu­cra­tive ten­der in 2016 by us­ing a bo­gus tax-clear­ance cer­tifi­cate.

Man­thata charges were pro­vi­sion­ally with­drawn in De­cem­ber last year.

“An un­signed re­port has been re­ceived from (law firm) ENSafrica. The rea­son why it is a draft re­port is be­cause ENSafrica is a third party.

“The re­port has been given to the de­fence. If there is any ex­cul­pa­tory ev­i­dence or any com­ments which the de­fence wishes to add, they can do so,” Cha­bal­ala said.

“On the next date of ap­pear­ance, the State will make copies of the charge sheet and the docket avail­able to the de­fence,” Cha­bal­ala added.

The pros­e­cu­tor had said in De­cem­ber last year that the “search-and-seizure” oper­a­tion car­ried out in July last year on Man­thata’s premises had al­legedly gar­nered more ev­i­dence for the pros­e­cu­tion.

Cha­bal­ala did not re­veal the na­ture of the new ev­i­dence.

Yes­ter­day, Kineil Muthray, le­gal rep­re­sen­ta­tive for Napo and Pil­lay, con­firmed re­ceipt of the ENSafrica foren­sic re­port, and that the pros­e­cu­tion had agreed to make copies of the charge sheet avail­able to the de­fence.

“This will give the de­fence time to study the docket and charge sheet, and thereby set a date for trial,” Muthray said.

This was agreed upon by Phahlane’s lawyer Piet du Plessis, who also spoke on be­half of the other ac­cused.

The mat­ter re­turns in May.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.