Tag Archives: South Africa

South Africa: BLF attack on advocate a threat to justice and rule of law – NADEL

December 11, 2018

The National Association of Democratic Lawyers (NADEL) condemns the attack on a Johannesburg Advocate at the Johannesburg High Court.

It was reported in the media that a female advocate was attacked by a mob of members of the political party Black First Land First(BLF). It was reported that the advocate was cornered and then beaten in an elevator including being punched in the face. She managed to escape her attackers when the elevator stopped. The mob then went to court looking for her.

We expect that this violent, criminal incident will be thoroughly investigated by the authorities. The perpetrators must face the full might of the law.

The courthouse and courtroom represents the ideals of justice, democracy and the rule of law especially in our constitutional dispensation. The attack on the advocate is therefore also an attack on the very principles of justice, democracy and the rule of law.

In a democracy the rule of law protects the rights of citizens, maintains order and limits the political exercise of power. The rule of law is critical for democracy rooted in equal rights and accountability to flourish. The rule of law is dispensed through our judiciary housed in our courthouses.

Threats and violence against lawyers, legal professionals and members of the judiciary also represent a significant threat to the rule of law.

This attack cannot be viewed as a single incident or in a vacuum. There has been an increase in the number of violent incidents in our courts.





South Africa: Top criminal lawyer Pete Mihalik killed in hit outside child’s school

October 30, 2018

Mihalik, whose clients included leading Cape Town gangsters, had bodyguards but ‘the shooter went up to the car window and just killed him’

Advocate Pete Mihalik during the Susan Rohde trial in the Western Cape High Court on December 4 2017 in Cape Town. Picture: GALLO IMAGES / NETWERK24 / ADRIAN DE KOCK

One of Cape Town’s top criminal lawyers was shot dead on Tuesday while dropping his child at school.

Attorney Pete Mihalik‚ 50‚ was killed in what witnesses described as an execution outside Reddam House Atlantic Seaboard in Green Point on Tuesday, his partner Bruce Hendricks said.

It is understood that Mihalik’s eight-year-old son was injured in the shooting.

The lawyer also had a daughter‚ and it is understood that his wife committed suicide earlier this year.

Sources said Mihalik had bodyguards but “the shooter went up to the car window and just killed him”.

Paramedics arrived on the scene but were unable to save him.

A photograph tweeted from the scene showed a single bullet hole in the driver’s door window. Police were at the school and pupils were being escorted out.








South Africa: Timothy Omotoso’s lawyer #PeterDaubermann said he fears for his life

October 21, 2018

Nigerian televangelist Timothy Omotoso’s lawyer Peter Daubermann said he fears for his life after he put up a fight for his client in court last week.

Daubermann was “attacked” as he left Port Elizabeth High Court last week after an outrage on social media over his line of questioning of Cheryl Zondi, who testified that Omotoso raped her multiple times during her time in the ministry.

Omotoso, 60, faces charges of rape and alleged human trafficking of more than 30 girls.
Daubermann labelled the incident in which he had water thrown at him as he left court as an “attack on the justice system”, adding that he fears for his safety and has had to make security arrangements for himself.

“Legal representation is a pillar of the justice system. Any person, no matter how unpopular they are and how unpopular their cause is, or any of the crimes of which they are charged, is entitled to legal representation.
“Once you start interfering with that right it could lead to the collapse of the entire system,” he said.

“The accused has the right to be represented by whoever he wants and the accused will feel aggrieved if the person tasked to represent him has been put under severe stress of fear of being attacked.







South Africa: Human rights lawyer charged with assault for pointing his finger at a police officer

October 12, 2018

‘The accused … did unlawfully and intentionally assault Andries Petrus Swart by pointing him with a finger [sic]’

Attorney Richard Spoor. Picture: FINANCIAL MAIL

South African human rights attorney Richard Spoor is well-known for his sharp mind and forthright tongue‚ but now he has run into deep trouble because of his finger — or‚ to be more exact‚ for assaulting a police officer “by pointing him with a finger”.

Two weeks ago‚ the Nelspruit-based attorney was involved in a heated verbal encounter with mineral resources minister Gwede Mantashe and senior Eastern Cape police commissioner Maj-Gen Andre Swart on the Wild Coast‚ which ended with Spoor being taken off to the local police station and charged with assault.

Spoor‚ who represents members of the Amadiba Crisis Committee who are opposed to an Australian-led mineral sands mining project near the village of Xolobeni‚ had complained that anti-mining residents were being marginalised from Mantashe’s public meeting.

He later appeared in the Mzamba Magistrate’s Court‚ where the case was remanded to October 25.

But now Spoor is back in the news after posting a copy of his charge sheet on Facebook on Friday. The charge sheet reads: “The accused is guilty of the crime of assault in that on or about September 23 2018 … the accused did unlawfully and intentionally assault Andries Petrus Swart by pointing him with a finger [sic].”



South Africa: Attorney who marched on Mantashe’s mining meeting charged

September 25, 2018

Richard Spoor, the lawyer of Xolobeni anti-mining group.

An Eastern Cape attorney who was arrested after marching on a venue where Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe was meeting with residents over the weekend has appeared in the Bizana Magistrate’s Court.

Richard Spoor, who together with residents opposes an application for a mine in Xolobeni, was arrested at the weekend after marching with community members.

Read: Attorney arrested after bumping heads with Mantashe, marching at mining meeting

He was released over the weekend with a warning and ordered to appear in court on Tuesday.

Videos on social media showed Spoor and Mantashe in a heated exchange at the venue before an irate Mantashe was seen walking away.

National Prosecuting Authority spokesperson Luxolo Tyali said he had been charged with disobeying a police officer’s instruction, inciting public violence and common assault.

“The matter was postponed to October 25 for further investigations,” he said.

Tear gas, stun grenades

Mantashe had visited the village in the Mbizana local municipality, on the Wild Coast, on Sunday to engage with residents on issues emanating from an application by Australian company Transworld Energy and Mineral Resources (TEM) for rights to mine the titanium-rich sands.










South Africa: Tear gas and handcuffs at Mantashe’s meeting near Xolobeni village

September 24, 2018

Human rights attorney Richard Spoor arrested and charged with ‘incitement’ after altercation with minister

Lawyer Richard Spoor has a heated argument with mineral resources minister Gwede Mantashe on the Wild Coast at the weekend. Image: AMADIBA CRISIS COMMITTEE/VIA FACEBOOK

Human rights attorney Richard Spoor was arrested after a heated fracas with mineral resources minister Gwede Mantashe on the Wild Coast which reportedly ended with tear gas fired against anti-mining protesters on Sunday.

Spoor‚ who represents members of the Xolobeni community who are opposing an Australian-backed venture to mine ilmenite and other heavy minerals on community land south of the Wild Coast Sun Casino‚ was arrested on Sunday.

A video clip from the scene showed Spoor‚ shortly before his arrest‚ engaged in a heated discussion with Mantashe outside a large marquee erected during the minister’s weekend tour to KwaZulu-Natal and the Eastern Cape to address community tensions over several coal and dune mining ventures.

“Don’t call me a liar please! I am trying to help you. If you work with us we can work together to solve problems‚” Spoor told Mantashe in the clip.

Mantashe responded: “Okay. But you are disrupting my meeting.”

Attorney Johan Lorenzon told TimesLIVE that Spoor was released on warning on Sunday afternoon after being charged with “incitement” under the Riotous Assemblies Act and was due to appear in the Bizana Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday.





South Africa: JUST IN: Sebenza SAPS hunt for two “hitmen” after lawyer is beaten, shot and hospitalised

September 17, 2018

A 26-year-old suspect believed to be connected to the attempted murder of a lawyer in the Sebenza police precinct earlier today has been arrested.

Also read: LATEST: Two arrested for murder of Edenvale resident (77)

Sebenza Police Station’s spokesperson, Sgt Sharon Tsotsotso said the suspect was arrested by SAPS and EMPD officers after he and two “hitmen” attacked the lawyer.

“During the confrontation, the lawyer was shot in his abdomen. He was taken to hospital where he was stabilised. We think the matter is related to the sale of an RDP house,” said Tsotsotso.

Also read: Girlfriend serves deadly pudding to boyfriend’s other woman, confesses to murder.

“In June the suspect transferred over R200 000 to the lawyer,” said Tsotsotso.

“After making the transfer the suspect was informed that the sale had been illegal and he wanted his money back.”

Tsotsotso said the trio confronted the lawyer on Limoniet Road this morning.

“The suspect hit the lawyer with a steering lock. Fearing for his life, the lawyer fled and entered his vehicle where he was shot,” said Tsotsotso.

“The suspect continued to hit the lawyer after he was shot.”

She said the two “hitmen” fled the scene in a grey Three Series BMW.