Veteran author Jacques Pauw has expected a raid on his home for awhile but was surprised that the police unit decided to act now.
Pauw confirmed that three officers from the Hawks arrived at his home in Riebeek Kasteel, about 80km north-east of Cape Town on Wednesday and that he and his wife cooperated with the two hour-long search.
He told EWN that nothing of value had been taken from his home and restaurant. “They left with a few papers. Nothing significant.”
“There were no secret documents in my office. Did they really think I would keep my documentation in my office? Because I’ve expected raids like this for some time.”
Pauw said that the raid was “extremely short-sighted”.
“I don’t know where the order came from, but I can assure you it was not a good idea [to search a journalist’s home],” he said.
The officers went “through restaurant files and CVs of locals who applied for jobs and old copies of Getaway [the travel magazine],” according to Pauw’s wife Sam Rodgers.
Pauw’s lawyer Willem de Klerk confirmed to News24 that the Hawks obtained a search and seizure warrant to conduct searches at the author’s home, but told the Daily Maverick that he was unsure what the next steps would be.
De Klerk said that the warrant “relates to supposed secret documents in the possession of the author.”
The case relates to a docket opened by the State Security Agency (SSA) at the Lyttleton police station in Pretoria.
Hawks spokesperson Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi confirmed the search and seizures being carried out at Pauw’s house.
“The warrant was granted by a magistrate in Malmesbury in Cape Town. It is a very complicated process and it was only granted to us today,” he said.
In his book, The President’s Keepers, Pauw revealed the existence of a parallel intelligence network within the SSA.
Mulaudzi said the warrant covered any documents and evidence that could assist in the investigations related to the case opened by SSA following the book’s publication.
“We are working in conjunction with the National Prosecuting Authority and it is in terms of violations of the National Strategic Intelligence Act.”