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NPA ready to proceed with Mdluli case

Richard Mdluli earlier made an appearance in court on charges including intimidation and assault.

Former crime intelligence head Richard Mdluli. Picture: Barry Bateman/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) says it's ready to proceed with its case against former crime intelligence head Richard Mdluli.

Mdluli made a brief appearance in the High Court sitting in Palm Ridge on charges including intimidation and assault.

The charges were reinstated after the Supreme Court of Appeal upheld a High Court ruling against them being withdrawn.

The matter relates to the 1999 murder of a Vosloorus man.

It's alleged the former Vosloorus police station's head of detectives plotted the murder of Oupa Ramogibe, who was apparently his lover's husband.

Wearing a blue suit, Mdluli appeared briefly in court accompanied by dozens of men.

The NPA's Nathi Mncube says the state's case is ready.

"We are certainly ready. In fact, we were ready even prior to the decision to withdraw the charges."

Mdluli is expected back in court next month.

His case was postponed as his legal representative was not in court.

TOP OFFICIALS CHARGED WITH PERJURY

The NPA has confirmed that three of its top officials have been criminally charged with perjury, as President Jacob Zuma still decides whether to suspend its head Mxolisi Nxasana.

The City Press reported on Sunday that Nxasana's deputy, Advocate Nomgcobo Jiba, Specialised Commercial Crimes Unit head advocate Lawrence Mrwebi and Pretoria provincial prosecutions boss Sibongile Mzinyathi now face criminal charges.

It's understood these relate to their conduct during their decision to withdraw charges against Mdluli.

The Supreme Court of Appeal ruled in April that the decision to withdraw charges against Mdluli was illegal and irrational.

The judges also said that the version of events offered by Mrwebi in particular was so incredible that it had to be rejected out of hand, in other words, they didn't believe him.

Now, it appears Nxasana is taking action.

But if he's suspended, Jiba would normally act in his place, so this could also be a pre-emptive move by Nxasana.

Senior prosecutor Glynnis Breytenbach says the NPA lost its integrity the day its former head Vusi Pikoli left the organisation.

Pikoli is known for pushing ahead with criminal charges against disgraced top cop Jackie Selebi.

Breytenbach says Nxasana is trying to clean up the rot that has set in.

She says she regrets not defending Pikoli.

"We should have all defended him then and we didn't, myself included, something of which I am not proud. We lost our own dignity forever."

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