Suspected drug dealer back in court

Moses Mncwabe.



State Prosecutor Alexander Moolman argued it is not in the interest of justice to release Mncwabe on bail as Mncwabe was a flight risk with previous convictions.

Mncwabe was charged with possession and dealing in narcotics, and attempting to bribe officers of the law on September 22 when two officers of the Mountain Rise dog unit stopped to assist him with a flat tyre and discovered large amounts of cash and cocaine in his vehicle.

“Mncwabe has a previous conviction for theft and possession of an unlicensed semi-automatic weapon, drug usage and dealing. He has been to this court more than once and is now back again. He clearly has not learnt his lesson,” stated Moolman.

Defense Advocate Martin Krog argued that Mncwabe be granted bail as he has not been charged or convicted in six years and that he respected the law, to which Moolman retorted that if this were true, he would not have such an extensive criminal record.

“Based on his record, it is clear that he is not a flight risk because each time he has been charged, he has appeared in court to face his charges,” said Krog.

Krog addressed the state’s concern that Mncwabe may attempt to intimidate the two state witnesses, saying they were police officers who could defend themselves should the need arise.

He also added that Mncwabe could not tamper with the state evidence as Investigating Officer JD Singh and his team has had almost two weeks to gather information.

Magistrate Du Preez told the court that she needed time to evaluate the arguments presented by the state and defense and adjourned the trial until Friday.

Warrant Officer Jay Marian and Sergeant Leroy Boucher of the SAPS Dog Unit became overnight heroes after arresting Mncwabe and turning down an alleged R1 million bribe each for his release.

“He was absolutely calm despite us finding the drug stash in the Range Rover and he casually said he could sort us out and offered us ‘one each’ if we let him go. I asked him ‘one each of what?’ and he replied ‘one million rand each’. We were surprised but we are not that kind of policemen,” explained Marian (in an earlier Public Eye report) saying they then cuffed the suspect and placed him under arrest while calling in the incident.

Byrone Athman

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