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Hijackings 'epidemic' counts against bail for accused

Publish date: 11 January 2019
Issue Number: 4614
Diary: Legalbrief Today
Category: general

Stating that hijackings had reached ‘epidemic proportions’, a Durban magistrate denied bail to one of the men accused of hijacking and kidnapping a woman outside her Morningside work premises, says a report in The Mercury. The incident, in December last year, caused a stir on social media as a video of Marta Rubilar being bundled into a car went viral. Rubilar was found unharmed several hours later. Yesterday in the Durban Magistrate’s Court, Asibonge Mdlalose applied for bail in connection with the incident. He is facing charges of robbery with aggravating circumstances and kidnapping. Defence attorney Nhlanhla Mnculwane said he had not seen the footage of Mdlalose at the hijacking scene. He also said that his client was a first offender, had fully co-operated with police and gave them an explanation as to why he was in possession of Rubilar’s bank card. ‘He gave the name of the person who gave him the card and the applicant pointed out the house where the person resides,’ said Mnculwane. Handing down her ruling, Magistrate Vanitha Armu said the interests of justice far outweighed the interests of the accused. ‘The complainant in this case was kidnapped by four males, two with firearms, and one can only imagine the terrifying ordeal experienced by the complainant. She was extremely fortunate not to have been harmed,’ said Armu. ‘If the applicant is released on bail, it will undermine and jeopardise the objectives and proper functioning of the criminal justice system, including the bail system,’ she said. Mdlalose was remanded into custody and will appear in court again on 26 February.

Full report in The Mercury (subscription needed)