Durban - The leader of the right wing organisation Crusaders, who planned and conspired to overthrow the government in 2019 has been found guilty.
Harry Johannes Knoesen, 64, was convicted in the Middelburg High Court earlier today for the contravention of Protection of Constitutional Democracy Against Terrorism and Related Matters Act (POCDATARA).
The court found that he and his accomplices prepared and planned to carry out terrorist attacks on government institutions and the African population in South Africa on 28 November 2019.
Knoesen is the leader of the National Christian Resistance Movement aka “Crusaders” right-wing organisation.
Police spokesperson Colonel Katlego Mogale, confirmed that Knoesen was found guilty on four other counts, which included: incitement to carry out terrorist attacks in South Africa, soliciting support/recruitment of persons to carry out terrorist attacks in South Africa and unlawful possession of firearms and ammunition.
Police say that he will remain in custody for sentencing proceedings on June 10.
“He will present the sentencing reports as he is representing himself,” said Colonel Mogale.
The National Head for the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation, Lieutenant General Godfrey Lebeya said they were satisfied with the judgement.
"It once again shows that excellent intelligence gathering and dedicated investigation prevented a bloodbath in the country. If the planned attack was not prevented and disrupted, it would have lead to a racial war in South Africa.“
Two other accused in this matter Donald Abrahams, 57, and Erroll Abrahams, 52, pleaded guilty in December 2020 and are currently serving an eight year jail sentence.