ANC colours for alleged leader of Cape Town extortion racket
The alleged mastermind of a Cape Town extortion racket appeared in court on Tuesday wearing an ANC jacket.
Nafiz Modack was joined in the dock at Cape Town Magistrate’s Court by Colin Booysen‚ Ashley Fields‚ Jacques Cronje and Carl Lakay‚ who were told the state was adding seven charges of extortion to the one they already face. They also face a charge of intimidation.
Colonel Charl Kinnear‚ the detective leading the investigation of the biggest alleged extortion racket in the Western Cape‚ told the court Modack and Cronje are also being investigated for the murders of Nicole Muller and Donovan Jacobs at Cubana night club in Stellenbosch in October.
Cronje shook his head in apparent bemusement throughout Kinnear's testimony‚ raising his eyebrows and pulling a face of incredulity when he made claims about the “Modack group’s” temerity and disregard for the law‚ such as when they blocked roads with a convoy of vehicles while dining at Sea Point restaurants.
But the case seemed to take a more serious turn when prosecutor Esna Erasmus said the men were now facing eight charges of extortion and a charge of intimidation relating to the Grand Café in Green Point.
One of the extortion charges involves more than R100‚000‚ turning the men’s bail application into a “schedule 5” hearing. This means the onus is on the defence to prove it is in the interest of justice to have the men released.
Kinnear told the court the case was ready for trial and he believed that if the men were granted bail they would interfere with witnesses. He also said Modack would undoubtedly flee the country and not come back‚ as he had indicated as much.
“[Modack] has shown that he is very resourceful and it would not be impossible for him to get travel documents [even if his passport was handed in to the police]‚” said Kinnear.
Several other people were planning to make cases against the accused‚ he said‚ but they would only do so if only if the men were not granted bail‚ as they feared for their safety.
The case continues with Modack’s defence team — which on Tuesday included senior advocate Dirk Uys — starting their cross-examination of Kinnear.
Photography was allowed in court on Tuesday‚ but Fields objected to being photographed.