McBride refuses to submit warning statement to Hawks

Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) boss Robert McBride has refused to submit a warning statement to the Hawks, saying the elite police unit’s latest move was the culmination of a campaign against him.

The Hawks sent a letter to McBride asking him to make the warning statement by 11am on Monday, Eyewitness News reported.

In his response to the Hawks, McBride said the matter was 10 years old and had been dealt with at the time.

“Clearly, the Hawks are not acting in the interests of justice,” he said.

“The manner in which this matter is being pursued by the Hawks is similar to the way in which they pursued spurious and frivolous charges against [Finance Minister Pravin] Gordhan, which the NPA had to withdraw abruptly.” 

He said he believed the move by the Hawks was related to Ipid having taken a warning statement from Hawks boss Berning Ntlemeza last week, “during which he threatened that the Hawks would be taking statements against Ipid investigators”. 

Taking legal advice
“It is interesting that the charge of defeating the ends of justice is not a priority crime that falls within the mandate of the Hawks, yet they are devoting a lot of resources to pursue it.” 

McBride said he was going to take legal advice on the matter. Eyewitness News reported the statement was needed in relation to an attempted murder case from 2007 in Boksburg and a case involving a reportedly stolen BMW X5 for which McBride was being investigated.
The incidents occurred during McBride’s term as Ekurhuleni metro police chief.

Reports emerged that senior police and Hawks investigators have been conspiring to falsely implicate McBride in the attempted murder case.

A whistleblower told Eyewitness News he was contacted by a police lieutenant colonel in 2007 to draft an affidavit to implicate McBride in the attempted murder of cash-in-transit kingpin Marco Singh.

Singh was arrested while McBride was the metro police chief.

Controversial report
The state withdrew charges against McBride and his two co-accused, former director of investigations Matthew Sesoko and former head of Ipid in Limpopo Innocent Khuba, in November.

The trio was under investigation by the Hawks’ Crimes Against the State (Cats) unit for fraud and defeating the ends of justice in their investigation of former Hawks head Lieutenant General Anwa Dramat.

Dramat was accused of involvement in the illegal rendition of Zimbabwean nationals in 2010.

The findings contained in the last report on the matter, and which McBride signed, exonerated Dramat and differed greatly from an earlier report implicating him in the renditions.

According to law firm Werksmans Attorneys, portions of statements by individuals who implicated Dramat in the illegal renditions and which appeared in the first report were left out of the second report.

McBride has maintained that the earlier report did not take all the facts into account. – News24

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