Top defence attorney faces assault chargesComment on this story
Cape Town - An alleged altercation in a court’s corridors has seen top defence attorney William Booth playing the part of the accused as he faces a common assault charge.
The incident that dates back about six years was heard in the Bellville Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday when Booth appeared, represented by Daniel Rossouw.
Booth intends approaching the Western Cape High Court for a permanent stay of prosecution.
The matter was postponed to October 14.
The incident dates back to February 14, 2008. Booth and a prosecutor, Deolin Willemse, who was based at the Bellville Magistrate’s Court, but is now based at the Bhisho High Court, allegedly clashed in the corridors of the court.
A statement by Rossouw claims the altercation resulted when Booth tugged at Willemse’s prosecutor’s gown, and Willemse allegedly attempted to “headbutt” Booth.
He claims Booth had been “conveying a message” from the control prosecutor to Willemse that had to be placed on the court roll for Booth’s then-client.
Rossouw said that recently appointed National Director of Public Prosecutions Mxolisi Nxasana made the call for Booth to be tried in connection with the alleged assault on Willemse.
Booth will also be considering civil proceedings to claim damages for malicious prosecution by the NPA.