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Cape Town - An internationally popular model appeared in court this week for shoplifting.

Ibrahim Baith, both age and address unknown, appeared in the Cape Town Community Court on Wednesday, charged with theft.

Details of the alleged offence were not immediately available.

Defence attorney Neil Slabber told the court that the case justified a “diversion” – a process whereby the offender is punished by the authorities, as if by a court, but without the trauma of being in court.

He said he had sent written representations to the Western Cape Directorate for Public Prosecutions for the case to be diverted, but this was refused.

It transpired that Baith had been diverted on two previous occasions on theft charges, and the current case would be the third.

But the lawyer had  another, more pressing problem, which caused him to withdraw from the case there and then – Baith had run out of money.

A Legal Aid lawyer has now taken over the case, and Baith, who is out on warning, was warned to appear again on September 13.