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- A Stuijt
- Retired South African medical journalist, ex-Sunday Times of Johannesburg.
Two black children accuse an Afrikaner dad of 'buying stolen goods' next to a road-side, and then this happens...
VIRGINIA, Free State, South Africa. September 26 2008 - Afrikaner dad Frans van Sittert, 53, his son Jean, 16 and his girlfriend Michelle Cloete were chased by a police helicopter, arrested by a large armed police task force which threatened to kick in the boy's ribcage, and subjected to a violent arrest by more than two dozen police officers while travelling from Bloemfontein to their home in Virginia, Free State.
The three were then held at the Bloemfontein police station and told they 'd been arrested for 'murder and robbery'...the teenaged boy's clothing was even subjected to a forensic search for blood-stains.
In this deeply mysterious incident - which has everything to do with the habit of black children in South Africa to report everything whites do to the local police or community leaders -- the unarmed Afrikaner man and the teenagers were aggressively hunted down by a police chopper, brutally arrested by a large group of armed cops, the boy was kicked and threatened that they would kick in his rib-cage -- and then the three were taken to the Bloemfontein police station.
HELLO AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL - ARE YOU LISTENING?
There they were merely told that they had been arrested for what then turned out to be a non-existent 'murder and robbery'. That's how the Van Sittert boy celebrated his 16th birthday. And to add even more insult to this deeply traumatic experience, the police have yet to formally apologise...
Bought window-frames from a hungry man next to the road...
This was the terrifying ordeal which confronted Van Sitters when he was returning from the provincial capital of Bloemfontein where he had just obtained the documents for his new bakkie, travelling with his son and the boy's girlfriend.
- "Along the road we came across a man who was selling window-frames because his wife and kids didn't have food. So I bought the three frames from him,' said Van Sittert.
Are black kids told to write down everything white people do?
- Mr Van Sittert didn't know however that two nearby black school-children had noted down this entire totally innocent transaction; had written down Van Sitters' bakkie-registration number and had then rushed to the local police to tell them that 'the white man driving this vehicle had bought stolen goods'.
- This is not the first time such incidents have been noticed: black teachers have also been caught asking their pupils to write down every move made by white local farmers - they'd even given them a special form for reporting this.
The Van Sitterts and the girl had all noticed a police helicopter circling the area around Brandfort - but because this road was under construction, the dad had been concentrating too hard on trying to avoid the road-construction workers and hadn't paid much attention to the chopper. The children were chatting while watching it circling.
- "The next minute there was just dust and flying stones all around us and armed men rushing towards our vehicle,' said Van Sittert.
The helicopter had landed in a plowed field next to the road and armed men were rushing towards them, the children were shouting at him.
He stopped the bakkie at once -- and was immediately surrounded by a large number of cops, who ordered the three Afrikaners to get out of the bakkie at gunpoint. The children were physically dragged from the car and ordered to lie flat down on the tarmac - but the girl was then ordered to go and sit in front of the bakkie and her hands were tied up with cable."I will kick in your rib-cage,' said the cop to the boy:
- "There were about six to eight men all pointing their guns at us.
Jean at once point moved his arm and one cop kicked him hard and told him that if he moved again, he'd kick in his rib-cage'.
"Suddenly police cars came storming from all directions. Then we were handcuffed. We were then told that we were arrested, charged with murder and armed robbery.'
How to register a formal complaint against the SAPS:
The three terrified Afrikaners said the entire arrest experience was dreadfully confusing and traumatising: they found themselves abused, kicked around and cursed amidst 'tremendous confusion, one lane of the road was closed down, vehicles everywhere, noisy police cars, flashing blue lights and a loud police helicopter idling in a field next to the road.'
"We then were taken all the way to the police headquarters in Andries Pretoria in Bloemfontein, in three seperate vehicles.
- (note: the SAPS crime-records do not list the Bloemfontein police station. http://www.saps.gov.za)
Search for blood on the boy's clothing without any cause...
"One policeman was ordered to search for blood on Jean's clothing, but found nothing of course.They were not allowed to speak to each other. After sitting there for a while, a detective showed up, telling them they could phone their families now and talk to each other.
- They were never warned of their rights while they were told that they were under arrest. They were not allowed to phone a lawyer, either - and the minor children also were not questioned with their parents present, as is required under SA law.
There wásn't any murder....
They then suddenly heard the detective tell the arresting police officers: "What have you done? There wasn't any murder, it was a freak accident'.
The confused Van Sitterts and the Cloete girl were then suddenly told to leave the police station without any further explanations, with the cops still refusing to return the bakkie - and the deeply embarrassed detective instead took them to a guest house where they however, had to pay for their own lodgings...
- Van Sittert said the kind detective did help him get medicines for his chronic medical condition. They were only given back the bakkie next day and drove home from the Bloemfontein police station in a totally confused state.
Bunch of clowns...
"It was my son's birthday, and one of the police officers congratulated him and said 'could he forgive them for what a bunch of clowns had done to us...'
- Meanwhile Mrs Van Sittert back home had had a nervous collapse and needed treatment overnight when she'd heard about the terrifying ordeal her family had been put through. The Cloete girl also required trauma-treatment and was badly shaken. She had been manhandled by a large number of burly male police officers, although by law, she should only have been 'processed' by a female police officer...
Coward-cop with a firearm, kicking a child on the ground...
Van Sittert said he's already lodged a civil case against the policemen who had carried out this arrest. "I still cannot believe it. What coward-cop with a firearm kicks an unarmed child lying prostrate on the tarmac?"
Apparently, while Van Sittert was buying the window-frames from the destitute dad sitting along the road earlier, two local black children had written down the Afrikaner's car-number plates.They then rushed to the local police station, telling them that the Afrikaner had bought stolen goods.
See other similar incidents involving Afrikaners and cops: http://groups.msn.com/crimebustersofsouthafrica/policebrutality.msnw
The entire fiasco happened after a huge confusing story had apparently been concocted back at the Bloemfontein police station, where news had just come in that a black maid had died violently in the home of a white family -- she'd fallen against a washing machine, hitting her nose, and her nose-bone had penetrated into her brain and she'd died.
- Nobody had caused her to fall, however for some reason no-one has yet explained, the local cops investigating the freak-accident somehow had been led to believe that the black woman had died in an armed robbery instead.
How the 'investigating police'' concerned, had then linked the Van Sitterts and Ms Cloete in their bakkie to Virginia to this deadly freak-accident of a black maid in Bloemfontein, will probably remain forever a mystery.
Quite understandably, the police have not yet given an official statement. Police superintendent Susan Moseki promised they would 'react formally' later. It will be interesting to see her explanation of this chain of truly odd events...
And nobody at the Bloemfontein police station ever asked Van Sittert where he'd bought those window frames on his bakkie, either...
"I can arrange to have your wife raped, your kids and pets killed,' he'd told a colleague...
PRETORIA. Robert McBride, controversial head of the East/Rand Ekurhuleni metro police, was dismissed on Thursday evening.
However - here's the onion for taxpayers -- the council has undertaken to pay the legal costs for his drunk-driving trial!
Mayor Ntombi Mekgwe said the council had decided on Thursday to end McBride's contract with immediate effect. This meant he would be unemployed from Friday.
During his current drunken-driving hearing at the Pretoria Regional Court, witnesses testified that East Rand/Ekurhuleni metro police chief Robert McBride - a senior ANC-member -- had told one officer that he 'would arrange for his wife to be raped and his children and pets murdered'. It is apparently quite routine for influential ANC-members like McBride to threaten and intimidate others in order to maintain their power-base.
This is where these ANC-cadres were taught to do this: ANC torture camps http://groups.msn.com/crimebustersofsouthafrica/ancthesecrettorturecampsoftheancregime.msnw
McBride history with ANC:
- ANC member Robert McBride planned and participated in the carbombing of Magoo's Bar, a popular hangout for the South African Security Police forces in Durban in 1986.
Three white women pedestrians were killed when the bomb exploded, and many bar patrons wounded. McBride and a companion were sentenced to execution. A pardon negotiated by former president Nelson Mandela saved McBride from death row. McBride then became a diplomat and later the metropolitan police chief of the East Rand. He did apply for amnesty from the Truth and Reconcilition Commission, but stands by the bombing, saying that if he was in the same situation, he would do it again. http://www.irisfilms.org/longnight/ln_magoo.htmIn July last year, former mayor Duma Nkosi had put McBride on compulsory leave after he was arrested and charged with drunken driving and obstruction of justice. He had been arrested and charged after crashing his official car in December 2006, after the metro-police year end function - which is where this photograph of him and his buddies was taken, he's making the V- for Victory sign...The hearing into the incident is presently taking place in the Pretoria Magistrate's Court.
McBride's five-year contract would have expired at the end of November. However, Mekgwe said the council had decided to rather terminate the contract now, as McBride was on paid leave anyway. "We could have made our decision at the end of November, but decided to rather do it now." She declined to elaborate on the council's reasons for doing so. The rest of his contract will be paid out.
Mekgwe said the council would honour its commitment to pay the legal costs it had undertaken to pay, but if any new legal costs were incurred in any of his cases, McBride would be liable for those himself.
- She said Mkhabela Sibeko, acting head of metro police, would continue in that capacity until Patrick Flusk, city manager, decided who should be appointed.
- At 20:00 on Thursday night, McBride told Beeld that he had not been informed of the decision, and did not want to comment. http://www.news24.com/News24/South_Africa/News/0,,2-7-1442_2400017,00.html
Top squash-player James-Thomas Geldart, 20, shot by Ekhurhuleni metrocops
April 19 2008 A young Afrikaner Unisa student, and one of the country's top ten squash players, James-Thomas Geldart (20) is recovering from serious gunshot wounds in Glynnwood hospital after he was shot in the groin and the face by members of the notorious EastRand/kurhuleni-metropolitian police on the N12 highway near Springs.
He was returning from the Benoni Country Club. He's a trainer there and plays in its top honours-winning squash-team.
Photographed here with him by Beeld newspaper are his parents James jr and Amanda, and sister Petri, 15. The unarmed Unisa student was returning from the Benoni club when he was shot at around 12:30 and, chasing home with serious gun-shot wounds, crashed his car into a wall.The family said he was dragged from his car covered in blood, and kept saying: 'dad I thought I was being hijacked, they were shooting me.' The Geldart family already was badly traumatised by violent crime: recently they were also was attacked by armed black men inside their home, and about a year ago, James-Thomas' car also was hijacked. He said the shots were fired by two groups of armed men in two unmarked cars who had followed him on the N12 highway near Springs.
- They were giving no indications that they may have been cops. Believing they were hijackers or robbers, he called his security company CMS while he continued driving to his parental home.
SA Police captain Julia Claasen claimed that the metro-cops were 'following' the young Afrikaner when he had 'ignored a red traffic-light'. They are now 'investigating attempted murder,' she added. His dad says he cannot understand why his unarmed son was shot at at all. "He's still a child, he was the headboy at Brandwag (Afrikaans) High School and among the top-ten squash players in the country. "He's in his third year studying for a B-com in financial management at Unisa.'
The father 'had heard that the metro police were busy with some kind of crime-prevention campaign in Springs. Perhaps that had something to do with it.' http://www.news24.com/Beeld/Suid-Afrika/0,,3-975_2308619,00.html
June 1 2008 -- On McBride's watch, innocent people were also injured and killed. This photograph by Rapport newspaper photographer Christiaan Kotze was taken while the East Rand/Ekurhuleni metropolitan police had been ordered to shoot at a crowd at the Ramaphosa squatter camp.The man in the red shirt in the foreground died just minutes after this photograph was taken. He was Qenesane Benjamin Hans, a South African resident who lived at the Ramaphosa squatter camp and walked past, enroute to his job.
And the policemen which can be seen firing behind him all belong to the EastRand/Ehkurhuleni police force - they had just been ordered to 'fire on a crowd' at Ramaphosa squatter camp by Robert McBride, who had just arrived and taken over command of the action from the national SA Police Service.Kotze and Hans both were injured by rubber bullets and shotgun-pellets being fired in volleys fired from metropolitan-police guns just seconds after this photograph was taken and pellets had also shattered the camera-lens. The two injured men were taken to hospital in the same ambulance. Mr. Hans had suffered severe head wounds and succumbed in the ambulance, Mr. Kotze was treated and discharged.
Kotze states that he had noticed that Mr Hans clearly had been an innocent bystander who really was just walking through the area and had not been involved in any 'xenophobic attacks'. Kotze had not noticed him amongst the rowdy crowd behind them before he and Kotze were shot. The entire incident is even more controversial because at that time, the officially 'suspended' metropolitan police chief Robert McBride had arrived in the middle of these xenophobic attacks and intervened with the national SA Police's attempts to calm down the crowd -- by taking over command. Shortly thereafter, when a bottle was thrown at McBride from the crowd, orders were given to shoot at them - injuring Hans and Kotze, amongst others.
McBride 's actions were so controversial because he had officially been placed on 'extended leave' pending the outcome of his trial for drunk-driving. http://www.rapport.co.za/