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De Kock parole decision on Thursday

Johannesburg - Justice Minister Michael Masutha will announce on Thursday whether former apartheid-era police colonel Eugene de Kock will be granted parole.

Former apartheid-era police colonel Eugene de Kock. File photo: Denis Farrell. Credit: AP

The minister was expected to make the announcement in Pretoria.

De Kock, a former police death squad commander, approached the High Court in Pretoria for a decision in May.

Judge Thokozile Masipa gave Masutha 30 days to make a decision. The 30 days did not include weekends and holidays.

The national council for correctional services made a recommendation about De Kock's parole in November last year. The recommendation was sent to then minister S'bu Ndebele. When he failed to act, De Kock approached the high court to force him to do so.

De Kock was in charge of a police “death squad” at Vlakplaas, outside Pretoria, and was arrested in mid-1994. He was convicted and sentenced in the High Court in Pretoria in 1996.

He was sentenced to two terms of life imprisonment for two murders and to a further 212 years' imprisonment on charges including conspiracy to commit murder, culpable homicide, kidnapping, assault, and fraud.

Many of his former colleagues who committed murder under his command testified in return for indemnity from prosecution.

De Kock, nicknamed “Prime Evil”, has spent two decades in prison. - Sapa

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