Modack underworld trial on hold due to ongoing lawyer delays

Alleged underworld kingpin Nafiz Modack. Picture: Armand Hough / Independent Newspapers

Alleged underworld kingpin Nafiz Modack. Picture: Armand Hough / Independent Newspapers

Published Feb 6, 2024


Cape Town - The Western Cape High Court has placed the Nafiz Modack trial on hold until Legal Aid appoints a lawyer for him amid his appeal.

A week into the mammoth underworld trial, centred on the murder of senior AGU detective Charl Kinnear, Judge Robert Henney yesterday ordered that a legal representative had to be appointed amid ongoing delays.

The much-anticipated trial was nearly hamstrung last month after it was revealed that Modack had appealed the decision by Legal Aid as he called for them to pay legal representatives of his choice.

Modack and 14 others are facing over 100 charges which include murder, attempted murder, public violence, racketeering and money laundering.

To date the group have been allowed to plea on each charge, on which they have all claimed to be not guilty.

Judge Henney expressed his frustration yesterday when court proceedings were delayed by more than two hours after it was revealed that Zane Killian was not brought from Malmesbury Prison, and threatened to let Killian out of detainment.

“Failure to bring an accused person to court is not a reason for a postponement. If an accused is not brought to court, I will not issue a warrant and that person will be released,” he said, as Killian was seen smiling in the dock.

Modack was also made to continue his pleas, and has so far denied trying to corrupt former deputy head of detectives, Major-General Jeremy Veary as well as Kinnear.

According to the State’s case, Modack allegedly offered the cops R40 000 for the return of his guns, confiscated during a raid carried out by Kinnear.

The trial was postponed to February 19, but Judge Henney warned that Modack, along with his younger brother Yaseen, were set to return to court on Monday for the finalisation of their representations.

Meanwhile, former Anti-Gang Unit cop Ashley Tabisher shocked the court when he revealed he wanted the return of his cellphones to prepare for his trial.

Tabisher, who is accused of colluding with Jannick Adonis and Amaal Jantjies to leak information about internal police operations, said he wanted all the chats between himself and his former boss, Major-General Andre Lincoln, to prove his innocence.

He said while the State was set to call Lincoln as a witness, he wanted the chats in the preparation for his case, as he believed there was vital information that would exonerate him.

Judge Henny ordered that this be done.