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State pressured over Krejcir evidence

Johannesburg - The State must narrow down more than 56 000 pages of evidence in Radovan Krejcir’s kidnapping and attempted murder trial, or his defence will again try to strike the case off the roll.

The Czech fugitive, Desai Luphondo, Siboniso Miya and Hawks members Samuel “Saddam” Maruping, George Nthoroane and Jan Mofokeng all appeared on the same charges on Thursday.

Czech fugitive Radovan Krejcir File picture: Werner Beukes. Credit: SAPA

The charges relate to allegations the six were involved in abducting and torturing a man in June last year after an alleged drug deal went wrong.

Their trial was due to begin in the South Gauteng High Court, sitting in the Palm Ridge Magistrate’s Court, but the accused’s legal team formally applied for the case to be struck off the roll before trial proceedings began.

Krejcir’s lawyer, advocate Annelene van den Heever, said the State had prejudiced her client by not handing over vital information.

They had repeatedly requested further particulars from prosecutors - which the State was likely to use during the trial - so they could prepare their defence.

They were also arguing that it would be impossible for them to read through separate evidence material given to them last week - more than 56 000 pages of information downloaded from cellphones belonging to all six - in order to be prepared for the trial.

State prosecutor Louis Mashiane said he had already supplied the defence with an affidavit that listed the relevant pages, estimated to be about 100 pages.

However, Judge Colin Lamont later ordered Mashiane to hand over copies of the relevant pages to the defence by no later than 1pm on Friday.

If he failed, Van den Heever said outside court, they would apply again for the matter to be struck off the roll.

Another request Van den Heever made was for the State to hand over the receipt of a J88 form, a medical report that details injuries.

When Mashiane objected, Judge Lamont said he could understand why the defence would want this information. He said it would allow them time to adequately prepare their cross-examination questions.

Van den Heever also requested that the names of people mentioned in the docket be revealed to the defence in confidence as she said these names were blacked out in the document given to them by the State.

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