Moyo trial moved to High Court

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(File photo) )Escapee Bongani Moyo. Photo: Sizwe Ndingane, The Star

The robbery trial of serial escapee Bongani Moyo and three others has been transferred to the High Court in Pretoria.

On Wednesday, Moyo appeared in the Pretoria Magistrate's Court along with co-accused Leon Ncube, Khumbulani Sibanda and Thabani Sibanda.

The four confirmed to the court they had received documents informing them of the transfer of the trial. These documents include charge sheets and disclosure of a list of State witnesses lined up for the High Court trial.

Magistrate Maryke de la Rey then informed the four that their case had been formally moved to the superior court, and set down for March 11 to 28 next year.

The four were closely guarded by members of the police tactical response unit and numerous prison guards on Wednesday. They were all handcuffed and in leg irons. All four would remain in custody.

Previously, the robbery case was postponed as the prosecution awaited instructions from the Directorate of Public Prosecutions on whether the four would be charged in terms of the Prevention of Organised Crime Act.

Later on Wednesday, Moyo would also stand trial in the Pretoria Magistrate's Court for escaping from the court on crutches in August 2011. He was re-arrested three weeks later near the Beitbridge border post in Limpopo, on his way back into South Africa from Zimbabwe.

Previously, Moyo told the court that the investigating officer who was responsible for transporting him to and from court was there when he escaped. He said when he walked out of the courtroom, the officer was nearby.

“When I was leaving and walking out (of court) he was there… he saw me,” said Moyo.

Moyo told the court that Warrant Officer Frederick Erasmus was talking to his three robbery co-accused, not too far from where he was sitting, before he fled. He claimed that shortly before Erasmus had threatened to kill him.

Moyo also faces another charge of attempting to escape from Pretoria Central Prison earlier this year, using prison overalls to scale the perimeter wall.

In March last year, Moyo escaped from the Boksburg prison. He was arrested almost three months later. – Sapa


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