Witness in protection goes missing

Court room. File picture
Court room. File picture
Image: TimesLIVE

A state witness meant to testify in a double murder trial involving six alleged gangsters disappeared from his witness protection accommodation, the Port Elizabeth High Court heard on Wednesday morning.

State prosecutor Mujaahid Sandan told judge Glen Goosen that the man – who cannot be identified as he was under witness protection – had vanished.

“[The witness] was brought in by witness protection [but] for unknown reasons to the state [the man] escaped from his accommodation,” he said.

Sandan asked Goosen to authorise an immediate warrant of arrest for the man.

He later asked Goosen to postpone the matter to Thursday to allow a task team more time to find the man.

It was not clear if the man was subpoenaed to appear in court.

His name does not appear in the indictment before court and he is not a former accused who turned state witness.

A prosecutor at the Port Elizabeth High Court, who cannot be named as she is not permitted to speak to the media, said that in all likelihood the man had been subpoenaed to appear in court to testify.

The man was expected to testify against alleged gangsters Damian “Oom Jan” Kammies, 24, Warren “Wakka” Steyn, 25, Deilon Makoppa, 32, Christiano “Twakkie” Whitebooi, 20, Kurt Bosman, 30, and Ashton Calvert, 26, who face a string of charges, including murder and kidnapping.

It is alleged that the men murdered Deon Matthys and Mohammed “Mielie” Gamieldien Abdullah.