OR Tambo heist suspects get bail‚ magistrate slates ‘dubious’ case

Thando Sonqishe and Prince Raphael – two of the OR Tambo International Airport heist accused – are due back in the Kempton Park Magistrate’s Court for their bail application
Picture: Alaister Russell/The Times

Three of the men accused of being behind the cash heist at OR Tambo International Airport last month have been granted bail by the Kempton Park Magistrate’s Court.

Sibusiso Job Mnisi‚ a maintenance worker at Guard Force International‚ was granted bail of R50 000‚ businessman Prince Raphael Dube was granted bail of R150 000‚ while another businessman Thando Sonqishe was granted bail of R100 000.

Magistrate Amukelani Msimeki said the state’s case “was subject to serious doubt”‚ but set strict bail conditions‚ which include reporting to Kempton Park and Midrand police stations on certain days of the week as well as not being allowed to leave the Gauteng province without permission from the investigating officer.

“The likelihood of investigations taking a long time to finalise and for further evidence to be brought against the accused‚ if any‚ to link them to the crime‚ is in itself an exceptional circumstance‚” she said.

Msimeki said the strict bail conditions were to allay fears the accused would evade trial and added the state had brought no evidence before the court to link the accused to the heist.

“There is no DNA‚ video footage or other evidence before this court to prove the accused were actually at the scene of the crime‚” she said.

Msimeki is also expected to rule on the bail applications of co-accused France Manaka‚ Simon Thokwane and Cosmos Ntanzi on Tuesday.

– TMG Digital/TimesLIVE

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