Ilse de Lange
1 minute read
12 Aug 2015
5:00 am

R2.5m for false murder arrest

Ilse de Lange

A young North West man who spent more than five months in detention as a youth after being arrested for a murder he had nothing to do with is to receive R2.5 million from the police minister.

Photo: Supplied

Judge Elizabeth Kubushi granted default judgment against the minister in the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria after the minister failed to defend the claim.

The young man was 17 years old and was doing Grade 9 when he was arrested on a murder charge and detained at Jouberton police station and later at a youth detention centre for 178 days before the charges against him were withdrawn.

He was arrested in August 2014 after residents told him the police were looking for him and he went to the police station to find out what they wanted.

He said in court papers he was arrested there and then without any questions asked. When he was later told to write a statement, he informed the police he had nothing to do with the murder.

He asked the investigating officer to investigate further as he was innocent, but his plea fell on deaf ears. In an effort to show his innocence, he then made a written statement saying he was not involved in the fight which caused the victim’s death and had only tried to stop it.

He even supplied the name of the person who had stabbed the victim, but was nevertheless charged with murder.

The investigating officer opposed bail and he spent Christmas in detention, during which time he was not allowed any interaction with his family.

The charges were only withdrawn at the end of January this year on the date when a formal bail application was to be heard.

He failed Grade 9 as a result of his lengthy unlawful arrest and detention. He initially sued the police for R6 million in damages for his loss of freedom, pain, suffering and discomfort and the infringement of his personal integrity, good name and reputation. – ilsedl@citizen.co.za