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20 Aug 2009 09:01
More than a million of the two million criminal cases reported annually in South Africa are never solved, the Mercury reported on Thursday.
“The cases seem to get lost somewhere—they fall through the cracks. We have to ensure cases are not filtered out,” said Willie Scholtz, head of the South African Criminal Justice System working group.
Scholtz was speaking at an event hosted by the University of Cape Town Graduate School of Business on Wednesday.
Scholtz blamed inadequate collection of evidence at crime scenes, insufficient investigation of crimes, trials that ran for an extremely long time, and ineffective court processes for the country’s 10,3% conviction rate in criminal cases.
Prosecutors and Legal Aid Board attorneys also played a role by “endlessly delaying cases”.
Scholtz heads up a team that assisted with a review of the criminal justice system.—Sapa
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