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12 March 2012 at 23:15 - Posted by Anonymous

Charges against Hawks being finalised


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Torture charges against 14 members of the Hawks are being finalised, the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) said on Monday.

“We are busy preparing an indictment on this matter. Charges will be finalised soon,” said Western Cape spokesman Eric Ntabazalila, but added it would not happen this week.

The DA said on Monday the Hawks had been given a great deal of power.

“This is unlike the NPA-based Scorpions which, before it was disbanded, had a constitutional obligation to carry out its activities responsibly and without fear, favour or prejudice,” said DA police spokeswoman Dianne Kohler-Barnard.

She said the charges arose from cases where members of the Hawks allegedly handcuffed suspects' hands behind their backs before pulling plastic bags over their heads. People were allegedly threatened with suffocation, hit, kicked and slapped.

Kohler-Barnard further claimed that some of the accused had been linked to the murder of Sidwell Mkwambi, 24, of New Crossroads, Cape Town. He was allegedly tortured to death and his body taken to a mortuary in a police van. – Sapa

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