The Commercial Crimes Court in Tshwane has denied bail for Crime Intelligence officer Morris “Captain KGB” Tshabalala, finding that he may be a threat to state security and that there was no evidence that he would adhere to bail conditions.
Magistrate Nicola Setshoege on Friday dismissed Tshabalala’s bail application, finding that he had failed to prove that it would be in the interests of justice to release him.
Setshoege stated that there was no evidence to prove that he would not interfere with witnesses or that he would comply with bail conditions.
Setshoege said the fact that “Captain KGB” had failed to report to serve a prison sentence, after his appeal against an armed robbery conviction was dismissed in 1994, was proof of this.
While evading a prison sentence for more than 15 years, Tshabalala joined the South African Police Service (SAPS) and obviously failed to disclose his previous conviction, the magistrate added.
“There cannot be any guarantee that any bail condition can be effectively monitored.”
Tshabalala claims he did not knowingly or intentionally evade his 10-year prison sentence and added that his legal representatives at the time told him his appeal was successful.
Tshabalala’s attorney Mpesi Makhanya said Tshabalala was ill-informed about his appeal and that a warrant of arrest was only served on him in 2013.
According to the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID), Tshabalala never reported for his prison sentence and went on the run. He then joined the police, working for Crime Intelligence until he was re-arrested in 2013.
Prosecutor Chris Smith found Tshabalala’s appeal records, which showed that his appeal against the conviction and sentence indeed failed and that an application for leave to appeal in 2014, while serving his sentence, had also been dismissed.
Smith argued Tshabalala’s claim that he had been ill-informed about his appeal was a bare one and that he had made no effort to provide the name of the secretary, the instructing attorney, or the affidavits from the two testifying to his claim.
According to the State, after Tshabalala was re-arrested in 2013, he was then dismissed from the police and spent two and a half years in prison while allegedly still receiving a salary from Crime Intelligence.
After bail was refused, Tshabalala was taken out of the court, where he assaulted a News24 journalist by grabbing his arm as he attempted to take a photograph of him.
Tshabalala has been charged with fraud, theft and corruption, which relates to alleged fraudulent invoices to the tune of R563 005, sourced for blinds and curtains for safe houses in Pretoria.
The invoices were submitted by “Captain KGB” and authorised by a major general, and the sum was paid out in cash.
IPID alleges that Tshabalala sourced a quote from Umwezo Wethu Promotions CC for R270 000, but requested R478 900 to be paid to him from the Crime Intelligence secret service account.
He allegedly pocketed R208 900, and then received an additional R50 000 as a kickback from Umwezo Wethu Promotions.
In another transaction, he allegedly requested R85 105 from Crime Intelligence, but only paid the same company R39 500, pocketing R45 605.
The case has been postponed to March 22 for further investigation. – News24