Court ready to proceed with matters involving 10 accused in operations raking in millions of rands
Nine men and a woman, accused of forming part of two illicit perlemoen enterprises, occupied separate sides of the Port Elizabeth High Court yesterday, where their matters were set down for trial.
Just moments later, as one of the men tried to exit the court, he was rearrested for breaching his bail conditions – for a second time.
The two groups – the first allegedly headed by well-known businessman and former nightclub owner Morne Blignault, and the second by young construction company owner Julian Brown – appeared one after the other in front of Judge Dayalin Chetty, where the prosecution indicated that the investigations were complete and the cases ready for trial.
Blignault, 45, who is out on bail of R250 000, stands accused alongside his ex-wife Marshelle, 40, Jacob Naumann, 35, William Nance, 53, his son Frederick, 19, Petrus Smit, 32, and Chinese nationals Zhenyong Haung and Kekun Pan.
Defence attorney Alwyn Griebenow confirmed his appearance on behalf of all the accused, except for Haung and Pan, who are already serving prison terms on perlemoen-related offences and will be defended by attorney Johan Hattingh.
Hattingh said representatives from the Chinese embassy were in court.
The group allegedly headed by Brown kept to themselves as they waited for their turn to appear.
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