by Lucas Mothibedi, SABC
State security experts have called on government to declare a national emergency, following a series of break-ins at investigating and prosecuting authorities.
An inside job is suspected in the latest burglary at Gauteng’s Director of Public Prosecutions in Pretoria. This came less than a week after a burglary at the offices of the Hawks, also in Pretoria.
The latest burglary happened when the National Prosecuting Authority -NPA- had its offices broken into. In all the burglaries there was no forced entry, raising suspicion that these could be inside jobs.
Key units such as Human Resource and Finance were targeted. Security experts maintain that the computers were not stolen for the resale – but were targeted by those who have interests in the criminal justice system.
Dr. Johan Burger of the Institute of Security Studies has criticised what he called government’s silence on the matter.
Johan Burger of the Institute of Security Studies says there’s something very sinister about the break-ins.
“That is worrying in succession within a week – less than a week within each other is that the criminal justice system is being targeted. Why do they target the criminal justice system? Are they simply searching of information in terms of investigations? Are they in search of information that relate to the investigation officers for the purpose of intimidation? We looking at institutions of state that are supposed to be fighting crime, but they are the biggest victims of it. There is huge silence from government.”
Earlier this year the offices of the Chief Justice were burgled in Midrand. The Office of the Chief Justice says it is still in the dark about progress in the police investigations. Spokesperson Nathi Ncube says:
“It has been a concern for us, there was break-in and computers were taken. We have confidence in the police that perpetrators will be caught. At this point in time we have not given an update on how far investigations has progressed.”
Efforts to get a comment from the Presidency were not successful. SABC news was referred to the Ministry of Communications who also referred us elsewhere.
Meanwhile, Police Minister Fikile Mbalula has denied that a spate of break-ins at prosecuting and investigating authorities are politically-motivated. Mbalula says the crimes are inside jobs and that corruption is the motive.
However, opposition parties have accused the country’s intelligence services of involvement, saying it’s all part of a power struggle in the ANC-led government.
by Iavan Pijoos, News24
The alleged mastermind behind the break-in at the Office of the Chief Justice is expected back in the Randburg Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday.
Nkosinathi Msimango, 34, handed himself over to police on March 24, after police said he had information that could lead to the recovery of 15 computers stolen from the offices in Midrand, during the early hours of Saturday, March 18.
The computers contained sensitive information about the country’s judges.
He was granted R5 000 bail in April. At his last court appearance in May, his lawyer said the State’s case was weak.
“As far as we are concerned, they don’t have a case against him and they can’t place him at the scene,” defence attorney Sammy Mahlangu said at the time.
His brother, Given Msimango, 20, and cousin Bigboy Yose, 37, who were arrested in connection with the robbery, were granted R1 000 bail each by the Mamelodi Magistrate’s Court. Their case had since been transferred to Pretoria Regional Court.
Given Msimango faces two counts of possessing an unlicensed firearm and ammunition, and Yose, four counts of contravening the Identification Act because he was allegedly found in possession of forged identity documents.