NPA to challenge Breytenbach finding in court

"The findings are factually incorrect and legally unsustainable," National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Nomilo Mpondo said on Tuesday. 

"The findings have serious implications on the enforcement of discipline in the NPA and will elevate insubordination, disobedience and unethical conduct into acceptable practice in the workplace, something which goes against employment law in our constitutional state."

As a result, it had decided to take the findings on review to court "without undue delay".

"The court will be asked to review and set aside the findings and replace them with a finding of guilty against Ms Breytenbach. In these circumstances, the court process should be respected and allowed to take its course," Mpondo said.

On Monday, Breytenbach was found not guilty on 15 counts by a disciplinary hearing which sat at the NPA's head office in Pretoria.


"The guilt of the employee on this plethora of charges has not been established," the hearing's chairperson Selby Mbenenge SC said.

Core charge
Breytenbach was also found not guilty on any of the alternative charges. A core charge against the anti-graft prosecutor was failing to act impartially when investigating the Kumba Iron Ore/Sishen and Imperial Crown Trading mining rights issue, because of "improper relations" with Sishen's lawyer Mike Hellens. 

Other charges included "surreptitiously leaking" NPA inside information to Beeld journalist Sonja Carstens, giving her official NPA laptop to her lawyer and "maligning" the NPA in the media.

Breytenbach was suspended from the NPA on April 30 2012. She claimed acting national director of public prosecutions Nomgcobo Jiba suspended her to stop her from prosecuting former police crime intelligence boss Richard Mdluli on fraud and other charges.

In March, a parallel arbitration hearing at the Public Service Bargaining Council, in Centurion, found Breytenbach's suspension was both procedurally and substantively fair. Her lawyer Gerhard Wagenaar said it was still being considered whether to review or appeal this decision. – Sapa

Subscribe to the M&G

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years, and we’ve survived right from day one thanks to the support of readers who value fiercely independent journalism that is beholden to no-one. To help us continue for another 35 future years with the same proud values, please consider taking out a subscription.

Sapa
Guest Author

Related stories

Marikana murder trial resumes

The eight-year battle for justice played out its next round in the Mahikeng high court this week

Why crooks are shivering in their boots

Ace Magashule’s anxiety has to do with the array of arrests of high-profile people facing fraud and corruption charges

How graft arrests came together

Learning from its failure to turn the Schabir Shaik conviction into one for Jacob Zuma, the state is now building an effective system for catching thieves. Khaya Koko, Sabelo Skiti and Paddy Harper take a look behind the scenes at how law enforcement agencies have started creating consequences for the corrupt

‘Haunted’ VBS executive Truter sentenced to seven years

Phillip Truter, the former chief financial officer of the defunct mutual bank who pleaded guilty to fraud and other charges, will work with authorities on how the alleged heist took place

Richard Calland: South Africa needs a Roosevelt style of leadership

President Cyril Ramaphosa needs to hold ‘fireside chats’ and have more power and institutional muscle around him, writes Richard Calland

Editorial: Arrests expose the rot in the ANC

The ANC has used its power to create networks of patronage. And this means going after corruption will cost the party financially
Advertising

Subscribers only

SAA bailout raises more questions

As the government continues to grapple with the troubles facing the airline, it would do well to keep on eye on the impending Denel implosion

ANC’s rogue deployees revealed

Despite 6 300 ANC cadres working in government, the party’s integrity committee has done little to deal with its accused members

More top stories

Fake trafficking news targets migrants

Exaggerated reports on social media of human trafficking syndicates snatching people in broad daylight legitimate xenophobia while deflecting from the real problems in society

It’s not a ‘second wave’: Covid resurges because safety measures...

A simple model shows how complacency in South Africa will cause the number of infections to go on an upward trend again

Unisa shortlists two candidates for the vice-chancellor job

The outgoing vice-chancellor’s term has been extended to April to allow for a smooth hand-over

How US foreign policy under Donald Trump has affected Africa

Lesotho has been used as a microcosm in this article to reflect how the foreign policy has affected Africa
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…

The best local and international journalism

handpicked and in your inbox every weekday