State re-serves 2012 indictment on Hawks’ Johan Booysen

2016-02-19 13:03

Suspended KwaZulu-Natal Hawks head General Johan Booysen has appeared in the Durban High Court for the state to re-serve an indictment outlining racketeering charges against him.

Booysen, who had successfully forced the state to withdraw the charges – which relate to an alleged hit squad operated by members of the Cato Manor Serious and Violent Crime Unit under his command – was re-arrested this week.

After the brief court appearance, in which he joined the 27 unit members charged with 14 counts of murdering suspects in taxi violence, cash in transit and ATM bombing cases, Booysen was again released on bail of R5000.

The case was adjourned until April 1, when Booysen’s legal team will lodge an application challenging the re-issuing of the racketeering certificate by the national director of public prosecutions in terms of the Prevention of Organised Crime Act.

The charge against Booysen had been withdrawn after the court earlier found that the issuing of the certificate had been unlawful.

An identical indictment to the original one served on Booysen and his colleagues when the case was transferred to the high court two years ago was served today.

The court heard that the same 309 witnesses named in the indictment would be called to give evidence and that the state did not, at this stage, have any new witnesses or evidence which it wanted to bring to court.

This morning Booysen, dressed in a dark suit, white shirt and grey shoes, appeared relaxed and confident as he joined his 27 colleagues – two have died since the charges were laid against them in June 2012 – in a three-tier dock in Durban’s A Court.

The courtroom was packed with family members of the accused and the 14 victims. A large, heavily armed contingent of riot police was deployed in the court complex.

Booysen told City Press after the short hearing that he was confident that his application to have the racketeering certificate – and thus the additional murder, conspiracy and defeating the ends of justice charges – dismissed would be successful.

“I have been in this court six times since this case began and each time I have won with the state being ordered to pay costs. I am confident that I will win this case as well,” Booysen said.

Booysen has also successfully won a series of disciplinary cases aimed at removing him from office that, at last tally, had cost the taxpayer R1.7 million.

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November 10 2019