By Karen Breytenbach
Two alleged Western Cape prison gang generals, Dawid "Doggy Dog" Ruiters, leader of the notorious "Flower Gang" who went on a murderous rampage in Namaqualand in the 1990s, and accomplice Charles "Chico" Adams are trying to be transferred closer to home from a maximum security prison near Bloemfontein.
The pair are among 10 dangerous prisoners who have asked the Cape High Court to order their urgent transfer to prisons near their homes because they are being "treated like sub-humans" in Manaung Maximum Security prison in Dewetsdorp.
The others are Donovan Krige, Jan Okies, Malcolm and Roderick Gerber, Ryno Moses, Ricardo van der Westhuizen, Shaun Voight and Walied Nagel.
Krige, their spokesperson, said their rights had been violated as they had not been given a chance to object to their transfers, most in 2006.
"We have made our beds and we must lie in it. Our complaint is that we would like to have a say about where our bed is located."
The court is to hear the application on November 27.
Correctional Services has opposed it, saying the men most likely want to be reunited with their fellow gangsters.
Their permanent return would pose a "serious danger" to warders and fellow inmates, and their trip to the Cape High Court could endanger those transporting them and court officials.
Ruiters and Adams were convicted of the murders in Nieuwoudtville of Briton Julia Fairbanks-Smith, her daughter, Emma Wall, four, and their hostess, Gansie Louw.
The pair are 27s gang generals.
Annelize Malan, deputy director of the Western Cape Correctional Services legal services, said the men were high-risk prisoners and high-ranking gang members.
Adams and Ruiters could "wield a lot of influence and power among prison gangsters and the prison population".
"They are not only dangerous, but disruptive of prison administration and discipline."
It was not true any of the men's "rights" had been violated.
Replying, Krige said the men were "model prisoners".
"Prison gangs have existed on the basis of inculcating discipline into the system and to organise prisoners (so) they are not exploited by the authorities - were it not for prison gangs, there would be a lot more anarchy and violence in prisons."