Former Western Cape police commissioner sentenced to 6 years behind bars

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CAPE TOWN, May 10 – Former Western Cape police commissioner Arno Lamoer has been sentenced to an effective six years behind bars for corruption.

Businessman and co-accused Salim Dawjee received the same sentence in the Western Cape High Court on Thursday.

Lamoer, along with tow truck company owner Salim Dawjee, and former police brigadiers Darius van der Ross, Sharon Govender and her husband Kolin Govender, initially faced 109 charges of corruption, racketeering and money laundering involving R1.6m. All of them initially pleaded not guilty.

In February, Lamoer pleaded guilty to one of the corruption charges he faced and was convicted on that charge. Former Brigadier Kolin Govender, also changed his plea of not guilty to guilty on one count of corruption. He admitted in court papers that between November 2011 and October 2013 he received gratifications to the amount of R24,601.44 from Dawjee, who is his cousin, and his two companies in exchange for special treatment. The money was used for the payment of pool maintenance, vehicle hire, petrol expenses and two flight tickets.

The total amount of money Dawjee and his companies paid in bribes amounted to almost R100,000.

Dawjee was found guilty of fraud and corruption, Sharon Govender was acquitted of all the charges she faced, while her husband Kolin Govender was found guilty of corruption. Van Der Ross was also found guilty of corruption.

Van der Ross and Kolin Govender were on Thursday sentenced to an effective two and four years in jail respectively.

Dawjee’s businesses were fined R60 000, of which R40,000 was suspended.

The National Prosecution Authority has welcomed the sentence. Spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila said: “During the trial, the court called witnesses from Ipid, NPA and the Hawks to show the prevalence of corruption in the police. It’s something we have to fight on a daily basis as it is a reality we are living with.”

He said Dawjee has indicated that he will appeal the custodial sentence. Judge Rosheni Allie agreed to hear the application for leave to appeal on Monday but said it should be “well motivated”.

– African News Agency (ANA)