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'Sibiya involved in illegal rendition operation'

A crime intelligence sergeant has pointed fingers at Gauteng Hawks boss Shadrack Sibiya.

Gauteng Hawks boss Shadrack Sibiya at a disciplinary hearing which started in Pretoria on 10 June 2015. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN.

PRETORIA - A crime intelligence sergeant has testified that Gauteng Hawks boss Shadrack Sibiya was in charge of the operation to arrest Zimbabwean suspects who were later illegally sent across the border.

The major general's disciplinary hearing for his involvement in the 2010 rendition started in Pretoria on Wednesday.

Sibiya has denied any involvement in the operation.

Sergeant Bongani Yende says on 5 November 2010 he met with several colleagues in Fourways ahead of an operation to arrest Zimbabwean suspects.

Yende says a commander told him that Sibiya had summoned them for the operation, and that he saw the general seated in a nearby car.

The sergeant described how a group of police officers then arrested several suspects in Diepsloot.

He says a Captain Cowboy Maluleke instructed them to detain the group at Orlando Police Station as illegal immigrants.

It's understood the Hawks will call four other crime intelligence officers to testify against Sibiya.

Yende has revealed that he and several colleagues were told in November 2010 that Zimbabwean suspects they had arrested had been killed.

The suspects were accused of murdering a policeman in Bulawayo.

He says on a second operation that month, Maluleke told officers on parade that the suspects they had arrested had been killed by Zimbabwean police.

Yende claims that Maluleke said that in Zimbabwe, if you killed the police, you get killed.

He testified that the men they arrested were detained as illegal immigrants.

SIBIYA'S PREVIOUS COURT APPEARANCE

Sibiya and his former commander Anwa Dramat are both implicated in the rendition, charges they have both denied.

Sibiya faces five charges, including gross dereliction of duty and gross misconduct, for allegedly sanctioning and directing the Zimbabwean rendition operation.

The charge sheet states he and Dramat held clandestine meetings with the Zimbabwean authorities, where it was agreed to trace and arrest five suspects accused of murdering a policeman in Bulawayo.

The general has, however, maintained that he had no knowledge of the operation and that he was being implicated by crime intelligence because of his involvement in the arrest of the unit's former commander, Richard Mdluli.

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