Police tight-lipped on top-cop arrest rumours
Police spokespersons remained tight-lipped on Thursday amid rumours that crime intelligence boss Lieutenant General Richard Mdluli has been arrested for murder.
“Police are working. Let’s allow the police to work. Any comment I can give you on this may compromise the work of the police,” said Major General Nonkululeko Mbatha, spokesperson for police National Commissioner Bheki Cele.
The National Prosecuting Authority also declined to comment.
Several police sources informed the media on Wednesday night that a warrant of arrest had been issued for Mdluli.
The Mail & Guardian reported last week that the Hawks were probing Mdluli and Gauteng crime intelligence boss Joey Mabasa over allegations that they interfered with the Hawks’ investigation into Czech fraud accused Radovan Krejcir. Newspaper reports on Thursday morning suggested that Mdluli was being investigated for the death of an ex-lover’s husband, who was shot dead in February 1999.
The slain husband, Oupa Ramogibe, apparently received death threats after marrying Mdluli’s ex-lover. He was allegedly told to leave her or he would be killed.
At the time, Mdluli was station commander at Vosloorus police station, east of Johannesburg, reported Beeld.
The Afrikaans daily said that 14 family members close to the murder case were put into a witness protection programme last week.
Both Beeld and the Star reported that Mdluli was supposed to have handed himself over to police on Tuesday, but failed to do so. An accomplice, however, allegedly did hand himself over.
City Press reported earlier in March that tensions between Cele and Mdluli were “sky high” after two police “spies” raided the Public Protector’s office.
Cele was reported to be livid when he found out about the “unannounced visit” to Public Protector Thuli Madonsela’s Pretoria office.
Police management suspended the two counter-intelligence officers.
“An inside source told City Press that tension between Cele and Mdluli had been simmering for a while, with Mdluli being seen by Cele and his supporters as the last senior official left in the police from the Jackie Selebi era,” the newspaper reported.
Mdluli was promoted from deputy head of Gauteng police to head of national crime intelligence on July 1 2009 by acting police chief Tim Williams.—Sapa