Lawyer: Evidence doesn’t support spying charges

It emerged on Friday that the Hawks have charged Ivan Pillay, Johan van Loggerenberg and Andries Janse van Rensburg in connection with the project 'Sunday Evenings'.

FILE: Ivan Pillay at the Commercial Crimes Court in Pretoria. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN.

PRETORIA - Three former South African Revenue Service (Sars) employees have strongly rejected allegations that they spied on the Scorpions more than a decade ago.

It emerged on Friday that the Hawks have charged Ivan Pillay, Johan van Loggerenberg and Andries Janse van Rensburg in connection with the so-called project Sunday Evenings.

The operation involved retrieving intercepted communications on Sunday evenings.

Both Pillay and van Loggerenberg were implicated in the now discredited reports about a unit within Sars which was unlawfully spying on people.

The three Sars officials’ attorney, Bernard Hotz, says this case is based on the same complaint which led to the failed attempt to prosecute former Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan.

“This particular charge emanates from the discredited KPMG report. It’s nothing new and goes back to those times. There’s no new evidence that my clients are aware of.”

Hotz says there is simply no case.

“The evidence which exists thus far doesn’t support the charges which have been brought against the individuals.”

The three former Sars officials are due in court on 9 April.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)