Johannesburg - The first case opened by a man who claims to have been kidnapped and tortured by Czech fugitive Radovan Krejcir and five others was closed by police, the High Court in Johannesburg heard on Wednesday.
“The police that were in charge of the case decided to close it, claiming it was false,” Annelene van den Heever, for Krejcir, told the court, sitting in Palm Ridge.
She said some of the information in that docket was now in the possession of prosecutor Louis Mashiane who reportedly refused to hand it to her.
Van den Heever submitted an application to have the contents of the docket handed to her.
“I want to find out why it was closed. What was there to hide?”
Bheki Lukhele was kidnapped, assaulted, and had boiling water poured over his head, allegedly by Krejcir, in a bid to make him reveal the whereabouts of his brother Doctor.
Doctor, who worked at a cargo company at OR Tambo International Airport, allegedly disappeared with 25kg of tik that he was tasked to help transport to Australia in June last year.
Krejcir, Desai Luphondo, Warrant Officers Samuel Modise Maropeng and George Jess Nthoroane, Jan Lefu Mofokeng, and Siboniso Miya face charges of dealing in drugs, and the attempted murder and kidnapping of Lukhele. They have all pleaded not guilty.
Lukhele opened a case about his attack shortly after it happened in June last year, but the case was then closed.
Paul Vusi Msimango, a State witness who claimed to have been recruited to find Doctor and the missing drugs, on Tuesday told the court police asked him to make a statement on the matter on November 18 last year.
Van den Heever questioned what had happened between June, when the alleged kidnapping happened, and November when the case was re-opened.
“Why did the police close it [the first docket] and say it was false?” Van den Heever asked.
“Did they think it's a false statement? Did the complainant turn around and say that he wasn't kidnapped?
“If it [the docket] may exonerate my client, I want to see it,” said Van den Heever.
Mashiane told the court he had the docket but argued the defence was not entitled to it. He said the defence, however, had been furnished with all the statements that were in the docket.
Mashiane told the court that the contents of the first docket had nothing to do with Msimango and Van Den Heever should continue cross-examining him.
Lukhele would take the stand later and the defence could question him about why the docket was initially closed and whether he had really been attacked, said Mashiane.
“It's not the first application on this... They knew the fact that their clients were arrested for an offence they did in June,” said Mashiane.
“It's nothing new. Why don't they call the witnesses to the box to say 'yes, I closed the docket because it was false'?” asked Mashiane.
He added that the defence had the particulars of the police officers who closed the case.
As Mashiane argued his case, Krejcir, dressed in a baby blue blazer, turned around and smiled at his wife Katerina Krejcirova sitting in the public gallery behind him. - Sapa