Pretoria - Lawyers of the three Tshwane Metro Police Department officers in hot water with the law are expected to make representation to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) to convince her why they should not be prosecuted.
The trio, Makgoba Raboshacia, Johnson Lebombo and Aubrey Phalane, appeared before the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court this week, facing charges of kidnapping, extortion, robbery and intimidation.
Their legal representatives told the court that they would be writing to the Provincial Director of Public Prosecutions, advocate Andrew Chauke, but would take the matter further to the National Director of Public Prosecutions Shamila Batohi if that did not work.
However, before the court postponed the case to October 9 to await the response of the DPP, the State said evidence included video footage.
The case alleges that, in September last year, the three pulled over a motorist and accused him of speeding.
He was in the car with his girlfriend and their 10-year-old daughter.
The officers allegedly disarmed him of his personal firearm before forcing him, under threat of arrest, to withdraw cash from an ATM at a petrol station in Rigel Avenue, Pretoria.
The officers allegedly further forced the man into the back of the police van and drove him to an isolated area, where they received the R4 000 he had just withdrawn.
It is further alleged that the they robbed him of a further R1 000 in his wallet.
The officers are no strangers to trouble at work, and are in court for five other cases, as well as being investigated for several more.
Last year, Phalane and Lebombo were allowed to return to work after being suspended for misconduct, only to be suspended again in June this year.
The officers also have a history of violent protests of them being filmed.
Appearing in court for their latest misconduct case, they are accused of accosting a member of AfriForum’s Private Prosecution Unit while he was filming them exiting the court on June 15.
A video made by the unit’s spokesperson Barry Bateman, shows an altercation where the officers attempted to rob Bateman of his phone and threatened him with arrest while manhandling him.
The incident came just a day after the Tshwane Metro Police issued a directive to all its members in response to numerous complaints of alleged extortion and corruption by the officers.
The Pretoria News recently reported that the department had been accused of employing more than 200 metro police officers with criminal records during the first phase of insourcing in 2020.
The revelation was made by Community Safety MMC Grandi Theunissen,.
More than 50 of the officers are set to be dismissed by the end of this month due to corruption.
Independent Media recently reported that, so far, the City of Tshwane had settled at least 182 of the 419 disciplinary proceedings filed against its officials since July 1 last year.
Officials from the department are involved in 259 disciplinary cases.