/ 19 May 2008

Fidentia’s Brown receiving ARVs after alleged rape

Fidentia’s J Arthur Brown was currently receiving antiretroviral (ARV) treatment in a private clinic after allegedly being sexually assaulted by prisoners in a prison vehicle, the Cape Town Magistrate’s Court heard on Monday.

Brown was arrested recently on charges of theft, fraud and money laundering involving the company Antheru.

Defence attorney William Booth told the court that the alleged sexual attack on Brown, while he was being transported from court to Pollsmoor Prison, amounted to rape.

Booth said Brown was traumatised from the incident and needed ongoing treatment and therapy.

Booth said Brown was being treated by a physician and a surgeon, as well as a psychiatrist.

He handed to the court letters from the three, recommending that Brown be kept at the unnamed hospital under police guard.

The proceedings, before magistrate Vusi Mhanga, took place in Brown’s absence.

Mhlanga had a week ago remanded Brown to the Cape Town police cells, and had refused a defence application for him to be held under police guard at any private clinic.

Booth told the court the commander at the Cape Town police station had permitted Brown’s transfer to the private clinic at the request of the doctors.

Brown had been remanded for a week to enable Scorpions senior counsel Bruce Morrison to gather information needed to oppose a bail application to be launched by Brown on May 27.

Morrison told the court he now had the necessary information and was ready to continue with the proceedings.

He told the court the state would not only oppose the bail application, but would also launch one for the revocation of Brown’s bail in two other cases.

Brown was out on bail in both other cases when he was re-arrested in the Antheru case, involving about R800 000.

The Antheru proceedings were postponed to May 27.

Monday also saw the postponement to May 26 of a high court application for Brown’s release on the basis that the arrest warrant was invalid.

His advocate, Rashad Khan, said outside the Cape High Court the delay was by agreement with the state’s legal team, which wanted time to reply to the allegations in the application.

He said the state on Monday handed over a copy of the affidavit by Scorpions investigator Shirene Fraser, which led to a magistrate ordering the latest arrest.

Khan said not only was the warrant invalid, but there had been an agreement it would not be carried out.

He also said he would study Fraser’s affidavit before deciding whether to apply in the Cape Town Magistrate’s Court for the setting aside of an arrest warrant against Brown’s wife, Susan.

She fled to Australia earlier this month with the couple’s children.

Khan said both warrants were issued on April 3. — Sapa