The lawyer for businessman Adam Catzavelos, who became a household name after a video of him casually using the k-word while on holiday in Greece went viral, has revealed that he is also facing charges – the details of which are not yet known – in the country in which the incident occurred.
Lawley Shein said Greek authorities had issued Catzavelos with a summons and they were awaiting a translation of the document so they could understand what they were attempting to prosecute him for.
Shein also highlighted problems with the jurisdiction of the case, as it happened outside South African borders. Whether he can therefore successfully be prosecuted in South Africa remains to be seen.
Charges of crimen injuria were laid against Catzavelos by Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) Gauteng leader Mandisa Mashego.
Catzavelos appeared at the Randburg Magistrates Court on Thursday morning. Lawley was handed a docket and it was explained that the case had been postponed so that representations could be made to national director of public prosecutions (NDPP) Shamila Batohi on behalf of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA).
Following his appearance, Catzavelos apologised for his racist statement in a clip that was broadcast on eNCA.
“In my moment of madness I had last year, I’m completely embarrassed and utterly ashamed at what I did and what I said and I express my sympathy and sorrow to anyone I upset or whose dignity I harmed,” he said.
“I had no intention of doing any of that and I’m here to face my consequences and I’m really sorry about any harm that I may have caused anyone.”
On 702, Mashego expressed the view that racism was a criminal act.
“Racism is a criminalised offence. It is something seen as offensive to your dignity. So, it is only fitting to go the Equality Court, because we need the dignity of our people to be fully restored. Racists are criminals and must be treated as such,” she said.
She added that the EFF would be present at Catzavelos’ court appearance.
#AdamCatzavelos abt to appear in court apologises for what he calls a ‘moment of madness’. He says “I’m here to face my consequences.” Do you accept his apology? #eNCA Video from @janke_tolmay pic.twitter.com/8zgLGZjHgH
— Shahan Ramkissoon (@ShahanR) June 13, 2019
The video that landed Catzavelos in deep trouble showed him on an overseas holiday.
“I’m going to give you a weather forecast,” he says, before extolling his pleasure at spending the day amid “blue skies, beautiful day, amazing sea and not one k****r in sight”.
“You cannot beat this,” he continued.
The video was apparently first posted on a private WhatsApp group and was circulated by a member of the group offended by its content.
The video has seen Catzavelos trending on Twitter, and it is likely that his name will become associated with racism in the same way that Penny Sparrow and Vicki Momberg are.
(Compiled by Daniel Friedman)