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Prosecutors: Krejcir torture claim a trend

The state said the Czech fugitive’s claim that he was tortured in custody was nothing new.

Radovan Krejcir with his legal team at the Palm Ridge Regional Court during his bail hearing on 4 December 2013. Picture: Christa Van der Walt/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The state on Wednesday said Czech fugitive Radovan Krejcir's claim that he was tortured after his arrest was a trend that he followed before.

The Palm Ridge Regional Court has been hearing Krejcir's bail application on Wednesday along with his three co-accused, including two Hawks officers and Desai Luphondo.

Magistrate Reginald Dama postponed the matter to Friday morning as he wanted the investigating officer in the case to take the stand.

Krejcir refutes the prosecution's claim that he's a drug dealer and is at the centre of a R24 million crystal meth shipment deal gone wrong.

Czech fugitive Radovan Krejcir and co-accused Desai Luphondo at the Palm Ridge Regional Court during their bail hearing, 4 December 2013. Picture: Christa Van der Walt/EWN.

Shortly after his arrest last month, he accused police of torturing him while in custody.

He then won a court order sending him to hospital for urgent treatment, although the judge in that matter would not rule on the cause of his health problems.

But prosecutor Lethabo Mashiane says this kind of claim is nothing new for Krejcir.

He said in the Czech Republic, Krejcir claimed he was tortured by authorities.

Mashiane also pointed the court to a 2007 statement in which he made the same claims.

But the prosecutor had to explain why the Czech was driven around for six hours after his arrest and not taken directly to a police station.

Mashiane says this was because the police were still searching for his co-accused.

He says Krejcir is capable of arranging false passports and has a history of claiming torture before making a run for it.

Radovan Krejcir's wife Katerina Krejcirova in the Palm Ridge Regional Court during her husband's bail hearing, 4 December 2013. Picture: Christa Van der Walt/EWN.

The state says it's extremely concerned that Krejcir will flee to the Seychelles.

Crucially, Dama prevented the state from handing in a fresh affidavit following objections from the defence lawyers.

Krejcir is accused of kidnapping an East Rand man whose brother absconded with a massive crystal meth shipment destined for Australia.

He allegedly held him hostage for four days and pouring boiling water over his head.

The man was allegedly kidnapped with the assistance of officers Samuel 'Saddam' Maropeng and Jeff Nthoroane, using their Hawks identity cards.

It's believed that the man's life was only saved when Luphondo offered to settle the debt.

In previous proceedings, prosecutors said Krejcir had already threatened witnesses in the case.

Prosecutors said witnesses would likely be killed if Krejcir was released on bail.

Czech fugitive Radovan Krejcir at the Palm Ridge Regional Court during his bail hearing, 4 December 2013. Picture: Christa Van der Walt/EWN.