Cape lawyer acquitted of 51 charges as witnesses were afraid to testify
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Cape Town - City lawyer Anthony Broadway, who faced 51 charges which included money laundering, racketeering and storing of abalone without a permit, was acquitted in the Western Cape High Court.
This came after two key witnesses, Michael Norman and David Bannister, told Judge Siraj Desai they were afraid to testify because their family members were threatened.
They were not prepared to take the stand against Broadway, who defended himself in the matter.
On Thursday when the two witnesses - along with their legal representatives - appeared before Desai, Norman told the court that several shots were fired at his vehicle the previous night.
The State subsequently concluded its case and on Friday Desai found Broadway not guilty.
On Sunday Broadway said: “They become witnesses for the State in a deal that I can only describe as an offer no sane person, let alone the criminally inclined, could refuse.
“Instead of the real possibility of a sentence they eventually settled on a mere three-year house arrest and a fine of around R2 million for R2 billion in poached abalone.
“You may well ask why the authorities would let the biggest illegal abalone syndicate in the Western Cape off with the proverbial slap on the hand in exchange for implicating me.”
According to him, the prosecution was retaliatory and defensive adding that before and in the course of defending a matter in the high court he uncovered evidence (uncontested) of meetings between senior members of the Hawks and a member of the National Prosecuting Authority, apparently to conceal police perjury.
“I can support what I say in the court record, of evidence by police witnesses who were present at the meeting,” he said.