Durban – The Department of Justice and Constitutional Development has slammed allegations court documents pertaining to the fraud and money laundering case against Prophet Shepherd Bushiri and his wife, Mary, were stolen during proceedings at the Pretoria Magistrate's Court on Monday.
Department spokesperson Steve Mahlangu said a full investigation was conducted and it was found magistrate’s court’s notes were in possession of the relevant court officials.
“It is standard practice for the clerk of the court to retrieve the charge sheet, as the custodian of the court records, for further processing and storage.
“The interaction between the clerk of the court and the journalist seen in the video/images was based on the journalist requesting to have sight of the charge sheet. This is allowed and does not imply that any documents were removed from the courtroom,” he said.
Mahlangu added all dockets are held by the National Prosecuting Authority, once they are handed over by the police investigating officer.
“The docket never get transmitted to a magistrate or judge hearing a matter. Therefore, the docket was not part of the documents that were exchanged between the court officials seen in the videos/images,” he said.
The Bushiris and their co-accused Willah and Zethu Mudolo and Landiwe Ntlokoane, are due back in court on November 4.
The five face charges of fraud and money laundering amounting to R102 million. | IOL