File picture: Henk Kruger/Africa News Agency
File picture: Henk Kruger/Africa News Agency

Former Camps Bay SAPS chief arrested for child porn after son lifts lid on abuse

By Chelsea Geach Time of article published Nov 28, 2020

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Cape Town - A former police captain who was station commander of Camps Bay SAPS for 21 years has been arrested on charges of indecent assault and the possession of child pornography.

He was arrested at his home in Vredehoek on Tuesday, after police officers found an unlicensed firearm and multiple boxes filled with home-made pornographic DVDs in his possession, many of which feature young boys.

Police spokesperson Brigadier Novela Potelwa said a 65-year-old man was arrested on charges of indecent assault and possession of child pornography.

“He was arrested on November 24 and appeared in court on the same day. He was released on bail. He will appear in court again on January 25 next year.“

Zbiegniew Andrzej Weclaw was a SAPS member for over 30 years and was station commander at Camps Bay for 21 years, according to his son, Daniel, who has come forward about the sexual abuse he allegedly suffered at his father’s hands throughout his childhood.

“Everyone would have known him for his outstanding service and saw him as this upstanding citizen in the community,” Daniel wrote on Facebook this week.

“It’s taken me 30 gruelling years filled with heartbreak and tears to eventually find a way to expose this evil monster. My father sexually assaulted me for years as a child starting when I was 6 years and continued until the end of primary school.”

Daniel said many previous attempts at reporting the abuse were thwarted by his father’s connections within the police force. Aside from the sexual abuse he survived, some of which his father also filmed, Daniel also allegedly witnessed his father beating and sexually assaulting women.

What I am going to tell everyone is probably going to shock some of you, especially if you are not aware of what is...

Posted by Dan Weclaw onWednesday, November 25, 2020

Daniel, now 39 years old, has spent most of his life in the shadow of the violence he alleges his father inflicted.

“The sexual abuse, psychological abuse and trauma he inflicted on me during this time completely broke me into a million little pieces and took away my innocence and completely destroyed me as a child.”

He has attempted suicide multiple times, including surviving shooting himself with his father’s gun. As soon as he was old enough, he moved far away from his father and they had irregular contact.

Zbiegniew, now ageing and in poor health, reached out to his estranged son earlier this year and convinced him to come take care of him. Daniel agreed, hoping to mend their relationship.

It was in this period, in Zbiegniew’s flat in Vredehoek, that Daniel found the box of child pornography DVDs, labelled with names and ages.

“He then said I must never watch them and asked me to destroy them. I cannot tell you how my heart dropped as I then realised that I was probably not the only life that he had destroyed.

“The DVDs that my father asked me to destroy were DVDs containing the footage of not only me as a child but loads of other young children.”

Daniel alleged that his father then threatened him with a firearm, causing him to leave the flat and return with four police officers, who put the DVDs into the TV to ascertain their content.

“I don’t know how it happened, but the second DVD I pulled out, there was a boy laying on a bed in a black speedo,” Daniel said.

As the camera panned up the boy’s body, zooming in on the genital area and then moving up over the chest, Daniel realised he was watching footage of himself as a child.

“I knew it was me. The camera went up to my face, I could see it was me. I lost it.”

Daniel said police seized the boxes of DVDs, and he gave a full statement at the police station of his years of abuse.

Daniel said the DVDs were sent to the Film and Publications Board to be analysed.

“I stand corrected, but I think there are 21 other children, 21 DVDs that they’ve classified as child pornography. It’s all home videos, all that he’s recorded in his flat.”

After three months of investigation, Daniel said his father was finally arrested and charged and let out on bail due to his ill health.

When contacted for comment over the phone, Zbiegniew declined to discuss the matter.

“I’ve got nothing to discuss,” he said. “That’s my business. I’ve got no comment at all.”

Daniel decided to speak out about the matter publicly as part of his own healing process, and to raise awareness during the 16 Days of Activism for No Violence Against Women and Children.

“When he was arrested and charged, it was a big thing for me. I’ve been labelled a liar and a problem child all my life, with everyone taking his side and not knowing the truth. I’m so tired of keeping it a secret. I need the closure. I need everyone to know.”

His post on Facebook has garnered hundreds of comments and shares, some from people who came forward with their own stories of abuse, and others offering him support.

Weekend Argus

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