The bail application of alleged Cape crime boss Nafiz Modack was mired in a flurry of paperwork demanding the finer details of the case the State is building against him and his co-accused.
Modack’s presence in the dock of the Blue Downs Regional Court on Friday was under close police guard. Modack and his co-accused face an array of charges include murder, attempted murder, money laundering, corruption and gang activity.
The 63-charge draft indictment covers the murder of Anti-Gang Unit detective Charl Kinnear, the attempted murder of lawyer William Booth, a hand grenade plot, and forcing someone to sign a form saying money is not owed to them.
Modack, Springs debt collector Zane Kilian, Jacques Cronje, Ricardo Morgan and Anti-Gang Unit member Ashley Tabisher stood in a row in the wood-panelled dock.
The charges most of them face are considered so serious that they must prove exceptional circumstances to justify their release ahead of a trial to be granted bail.
Modack has already complained that his application is taking too long and that his kidneys are hurting in prison.
He has also submitted in an affidavit that he is being targeted by crooked police officers for trying to rid clubs of drugs.
He sat during the hearing with a school exercise book and a diary in front of him as the legal to-and-fro played out.
The magistrate was Dion van der Spuy again, after the initial magistrate survived a serious shooting incident in Mfuleni which left police woman Lieutenant-Colonel Koliswa Vani dead.
One of Modack’s three laywers, Dirk Uys, argued that Modack has the right to have his bail application heard within seven days of his arrest.
He believes it is bordering on unlawful to keep Modack in custody for so long without a bail application.
“I asked for the particulars of every person known to the State to have taken part in the activities,” said Uys.
The State wasn’t showing its hand.
Prosecutor Greg Wolmarans said the parties would get what they need when the investigation is complete.
Giving the details away now could jeopardise many investigations underway, give away police methods and techniques, and possibly endanger witnesses.
He said he was receiving a barrage of affidavits from all of the lawyers, and had not had time to peruse all of them.
“It is not something to be done in the corridor of the court,” said Wolmarans. “We don’t operate that way.”
After lengthy exchanges and submissions, it was reluctantly agreed that the matter would have to be postponed again for more affidavits, for Uys’ interlocutory application for particulars of the case, and for everybody to have time to read them and respond to them.
However, Bruce Hendricks, a lawyer for Tabisher who faces a corruption charge, was not leaving without another bid to get his client released on bail.
“What is happening here indeed is an abortion of justice your honour,” submitted Hendricks, complaining about Tabisher’s long incarceration without a chance to apply for bail.
Tabisher is accused of agreeing to payment to slip Modack information on police raids, a charge Hendricks said previously he intends denying.
Hendricks’ other client Ricardo Morgan, accused of money laundering and for being involved in the murder of Kinnear, has already been granted bail of R50 000.
Wolmarans rejected the idea of separating Tabisher’s bail application from the others.
He said this could inadvertently reveal details of the investigation that the State does not want to be disclosed yet.
After a flurry of complex diary consultations for a date suitable to all parties, the matter was postponed to 9 June.