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Cape Town - A powerful leader in the Cape’s nightclub security trade was arrested before dawn on Tuesday and charged with criminal intimidation of a Cape Town businessman.
But Andre Naude has hit back - alleging that he was only trying to use his influence to stop dangerous body-building steroids being sold to school children.
Naude was charged with fraud earlier this year with businessman Mark Lifman after being accused of running the bouncer company Specialised Protection Services (SPS) without being registered with the Private Security Regulatory Authority (Psira), as is required by law. Both are out on bail.
On Friday in the Somerset West Magistrate’s Court, in a seemingly unrelated incident, the Hawks charged a Strand man, Marius Venter, with theft, intimidation and extortion for allegedly squeezing R3 000 a week out of a local businessman.
In the lead-up to Venter’s arrest, the Hawks had set up surveillance and electronically recorded two cash handovers from the businessman to Venter.
On the third occasion, an enforcement team had struck and arrested Venter in the parking lot at the Habitat Centre at the Somerset Mall shopping centre.
The businessman cannot be named.
Venter, a powerfully-built security guard who plies his trade protecting ships from pirates in the Indian Ocean, was granted R10 000 bail.
On Tuesday, Naude was arrested in connection with the matter too - also by leading detective Colonel Mike Barkhuizen of the police’s specialised Hawks investigative unit.
Naude was arrested shortly after arriving back in South Africa from watching a music concert in Ireland, and was taken to the Strand Magistrate’s Court.
He was charged with intimidation, for allegedly meeting the businessman and threatening him.
This charge of intimidation made him in breach of his bail conditions for the earlier charges of fraud.
Together, they constituted a “Schedule 5” offence.
This meant meant Naude’s attorney had to argue why it was in the interests of justice for Naude to receive bail.
But the State did not oppose bail and Naude was granted bail of R10 000.
Speaking after his release at the court, Naude hit out, saying his arrest had been an “injustice”.
He said he had met the businessman at Gordon’s Bay Spur on August 18, as the State alleges, but only to warn him against selling steroids to school children.
Naude denied that his warning to the businessman had amounted to the criminal charge of intimidation
Naude will appear again on yesterday’s intimidation charge on November 16.