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Heavy police presence at Pietermaritzburg court as Zuma arms deal case resumes

In terms of today's court proceedings, the State and accused are expected to finalise pre-trial matters.

The NPA team led by Adv. Billy Downer in the Pietermaritzburg Magistrates Court on 8 December 2020 for the case against former President Jacob Zuma and Thales. Picture: Nkosikhona Duma/EWN.

PIETERMARITZBURG - There's heavy police presence outside the Pietermaritzburg High Court on Tuesday morning where the corruption case against former President Jacob Zuma and French arms company Thales will be heard.

Zuma and Thales face money laundering, corruption and racketeering charges linked to the arms deal.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the mini-rallies that often take place during the former president's court appearances won't be allowed.

READ: Arms deal: Zuma, Thales back in court to resolve pre-trial issues

Law enforcement authorities are not taking any chances and are stationed throughout the Pietermaritzburg court precinct this morning, to prevent any possible security challenges.

Zuma's supporters are usually gathered outside court by this time during his court appearances but today that is not the case.

It’s not yet clear if the former president will physically be in court, however, his motorcade has not yet been spotted here.

ALSO READ: Jacob Zuma Foundation accuses State of violating former president's rights

In terms of today's court proceedings, the State and accused are expected to finalise pre-trial matters.

The State and Thales have indicated that they prefer for the trial to commence on 17 May.

Meanwhile, the Jacob Zuma Foundation has claimed that the State was not ready to proceed with the case, an allegation that the NPA has denied.

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