JOHANNESBURG – Terrorism accused and leader of the Patriotic Alliance (PA) in the West Rand Bruce Nimmerhoudt has cast doubt on the State’s evidence against him.
This was the damning ruling of Magistrate Annelie Africa in the Roodepoort Magistrate’s Court on Friday when she lambasted the police for their shoddy work, especially their failure to provide the court with evidence that Nimmerhoudt was the author of the voice note that encouraged people to attack malls and kill those who “stand in their way”.
The court found that there was nothing in the police docket which was material for it to deny Nimmerhoudt bail.
The State in its opposition to bail, led the evidence of the investigating officer Captain Phakamile Gumede who testified that the court should deny him bail, saying if granted bail, it would send shock waves and would lead to public disorder.
The court, however, found that “when Captain Gumede was asked to explain his testimony, he replied. It was my personal opinion”.
Africa said “there was no evidence that his release on bail will lead to a public outcry and disorder. Captain Gumede admitted, during his testimony, that it was his personal opinion, and that amounts to mere speculation.
“No evidence was led to support the charges against Nimmerhoudt, except that the police who arrested him acted on an intelligence report which said that the owner of that cell was the author of the voice.
“There was no voice-comparative analysis in the docket which support’s the state’s case,” Africa ruled.
She said the State’s case against Nimmerhoudt was “not sharp”, adding that the Hawks were provided with evidence about the identity of the first person who circulated the voice note but the police failed to obtain a statement from her.
Due to the police’s incomplete work, Nimmerhoudt was granted bail of R3 000 bail and was ordered to interfere with witnesses in the case.
He was ordered to co-operate with the police on August 5 when he will, for the first time, undergo a voice forensic examination to determine whether he is indeed the person speaking in the voice not.
His case was postponed until August 4 for further investigation.