Although he was the breadwinner, former police chief Jackie Selebi depended on his wife for cash, the South Gauteng High Court heard on Wednesday.
Chief prosecutor Gerrie Nel started cross-examining Selebi about “money matters”, often apologising to Selebi for having to ask him questions about his personal finances.
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The state alleges Selebi corruptly received R1,2-million from drug-dealer Glenn Agliotti between 2004 and 2006 and claims Selebi’s spending pattern during times when he received money from Agliotti confirms this.
Selebi denies receiving any money from Agliotti.
The former police commissioner told the court on Wednesday morning he had two sons who were studying during 2004. He paid for their tuition and expenses. He also paid for the studies of his nephew and niece.
Nel showed Selebi a number of payments made towards tertiary institutions, but said he couldn’t find any payments to known bookstores for the children’s study material.
Selebi said his wife, Anne, made these purchases. Anne Selebi did not attend cross-examination of her husband on Wednesday after Selebi’s lawyer accompanied her out of court, suggesting she might testify for her husband later in the trial.
Selebi explained that he had a credit card, but had to ask his wife if he needed cash. They kept cash in a safe at home and, according to him, she often cashed cheques at Nedbank.
Nel put it to Selebi that cheques worth R36 000 were cashed from his accounts during 2004 but during 2005, nothing.
Cheque vs withdrawal
Selebi first disputed this, reading from a document compiled by “me and my wife” for purposes of cross-examination, detailing a cash withdrawal of R16 000 during May 2005.
Nel told Selebi there was a difference between a cash withdrawal and cashing a cheque, and argued the R16 000 was made up of two cash withdrawals from Menlyn Shopping Mall.
Nel was building up his case and put it to Selebi his average income during 2004 was R32 000 per month. Selebi also admitted making two separate investments of R200 000 each into two Nedcor accounts.
Selebi faces charge of corruption and defeating the ends of justice. Cross-examination continues.