Cage Africa warns against labelling Thulsie brothers ‘terror twins’
Brandon-Lee and Tony-Lee Thulsie are facing terrorism related charges.
JOHANNESBURG - Advocacy group Cage Africa has raised concerns about a disturbing trend in which some media houses have labelled Brandon-Lee and Tony-Lee Thulsie the "terror twins", warning it shows an alarming insensitivity to the rights of accused persons.
The 23-year-old Johannesburg twins are facing terrorism related charges after the Hawks apprehended them earlier this month during a house raid and found evidence showing they had planned to bomb American and Jewish interests.
They have been behind bars since their arrest.
A formal bail application will be heard on Monday.
Cage Africa says referring to the Thulsie brothers as "terror twins" is inflammatory and contributes to creating a climate of fear and suspicion.
The group's Karen Jayes says, "They have not been through a court process. We have not seen any evidence against them, we don't know how the evidence was procured at this stage. And essentially it's a violation of their rights to be innocent until proven guilty."
CAGE Africa cautions SA press from labeling Thulsie "terror twins". Violates right to be innocent til proven guilty. https://t.co/2hkMcm9S9h— CAGE AFRICA (@CAGE_AFRICA) July 20, 2016
The brothers appeared briefly in the Johannesburg Magistrates Court yesterday.
'MOTHER OF THE TWINS IS TRAUMATISED'
The group says the twins' mother is taking strain after her sons were arrested and remains extremely traumatised by the police's conduct during the house raid that led to their arrest.
She became emotional yesterday when she realised her sons would be spending another week behind bars.
Jayes says, "She's worried about her boys. She has somebody from the community sleeping in her lounge at night. She startles very easily, obviously the raid on the house has left its mark on her."
The Hawks believe the Patel siblings who were also arrested during a house raid are linked to the Thulsie twins.
They have a new legal team representing them, who will launch a formal bail application on Monday.
The State will oppose bail based on the serious charges they face.