Pretoria - The independent watchdog which probes crimes committed by members of the South African Police Service (SAPS), the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) on Thursday said there a strong case against former national police commissioner Lieutenant-General Kgomotso Phahlane who is facing at least six counts of corruption.
“Well, it’s a strong enough case, that is why people are charged and are appearing in court. If it wasn’t strong, they wouldn’t be appearing in court if it wasn’t strong. Which is what we have always been saying, that there is a strong case against the accused,” Ipid spokesperson Moses Dlamini spoke to journalists at the Specialised Commercial Crime Court in Pretoria.
“The NPA [National Prosecuting Authority] has agreed with us, and they have charged the accused.”
Gauteng NPA spokesperson Phindi Mjonondwana said Phahlane “and two others” face charges of corruption and fraud.
Phahlane, his wife SAPS Brigadier Beauty Ntombizodwa Phahlane and a Pretoria businessman Durandt Snyman were on Thursday released on R10 000 bail each.
The trio appeared in the Specialised Commercial Crimes Court in Pretoria, on six charges of corruption, amounting to R900 000. Their matter has been categorised as a schedule five offence - a serious crime category.
The Phahlanes are accused of contravening the provisions of the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act.
“In that during 2011 - 2017 at or near Pretoria, in the regional division of North Gauteng, the accused [the Phahlanes] acting with a common purpose wrongfully, unlawfully, directly or indirectly, accepted/agreed/offered to accept any gratification ... from any other person to wit [that is to say] Durandt Snyman, whether for the benefit of himself, herself or themselves or for the benefit of any other person namely a family member, in order to act, personally or by influencing another person so to act ...” reads part of the court indictment seen by African News Agency.
The Ipid alleges that police supplier Keith Keating, who owns Forensic Data Analyst (FDA) facilitated the payment for the cars for the Phahlanes, through the Pretoria car dealership owned by Synman.
The Hawks last year raided properties belonging to Phahlane and Keating.
Keating is accused of gifting Phahlane with expensive cars in return for favours.
But Phahlane, who was the head of the police forensic unit at the time of the alleged dealings, has denied any corrupt deals and claims the cars were part of a sponsorship.
Synman on the other hand, reportedly insists he sponsored the cars - information which is contested by Ipid and the State.
Some of the cars the Phahlanes received include a grey Landrover Discovery 4, a silver Nissan Navara, Toyota Hilux 3.0, a grey Mercedes Benz C250, a silver VW Polo, and a silver Ford Rover.
Keating, like Phahlane, denies any corrupt dealings and claimed Phahlane did not get his cars from him.
Magistrate Nicca Setshogoe postponed the matter to March 12, to allow for ongoing investigations. The state prosecution, led by Advocate Henry Nxumalo did not oppose bail.
The three have since indicated that they will plead not guilty when the trial starts.
Phahlane was relieved of his duties in June 2017 amid the allegations of corruption.
African News Agency/ANA