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Paramedic in court

Cape Town - A paramedic appeared in court today on charges of obstructing a policeman in the execution of his duties after an argument at the scene of an accident near Franschhoek.

Garth van Zyl, of Medicare EMR in Franschhoek, was at the accident scene yesterday where a truck carrying sheep had overturned. He allegedly became involved in an argument with a police officer over the securing of the scene.

A video said to have been filmed during the incident, which ended with Van Zyl being arrested, threatened and shoved into a police van, has been posted on Facebook and YouTube and has also been posted on an American-based website. It shows Van Zyl asking the officer why he was not co-operating with a request from a fire chief to help secure the accident scene.

The officer responds by swearing at the paramedic and then leaves the scene. Later, he returns with a colleague and when they are asked for their names and numbers, they refuse the request and again verbally attack the paramedic. Van Zyl is then grabbed and forced into the police van.

Attempts to obtain a statement from police failed by the time of publication today.

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