Nel appeared in the Lichtenburg Magistrates’ Court in the North West on Monday, where he faced charges of common assault, crimen injuria, as well as resisting arrest, North West police said.
This after a video emerged of the ex-mayor resisting arrest as two police officers attempted to put him in the back of a police van.
The incident took place at a shopping centre in Lichtenburg on Saturday and resulted after Nel allegedly insulted and interfered with police who were tending to an accident scene in the complex.
According to police, Nel allegedly slapped an officer across the face and called him the k-word. A scuffle ensued after Nel refused to enter the police van when he was informed that he was under arrest.
In the video, Nel is seen scuffling with police officers as they try to put him in a van while a crowd watches.
During the struggle, the former mayor’s shirt appears to be ripped off.
Although the YouTube video was posted with the title, Police brutality in Lichtenburg, police have denied that excessive force was used in Nel’s arrest.
“If arresting a suspect is brutality, then it means suspects will never be arrested,” police spokesperson Brigadier Thulani Ngubane said.
Ngubane added that there was no indication of Nel being deliberately undressed, and that it was something that must be expected in a scuffle like the one seen in the video.
“Police will enforce the law without fear or favour, even when mayors and former mayors are suspects,” Ngubane said.
Nel is also due to appear in court soon on a separate charge of crimen injuria for his alleged racial abuse of an officer.
Read original story on citizen.co.za