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Butterfly wants charges dropped

MPHO MOKWAPE
Butterfly Maswabi PIC: THALEFANG CHARLES
Suspended Directorate of Intelligence and Security (DIS) agent, Welheminah Mphoeng Maswabi wants charges against her dropped  barely days after the State announced the engagement of South African Advocate, Gerri Nel in the matter.

Maswabi better known as  ‘Butterfly’ in the spy world  has written a demand letter through her lawyers, Mack Bahuma Attorneys, to the Director of the Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Stephen Tiroyakgosi.

In the letter, which  was filed on Monday this week, Butterfly demands that the State abandons the remaining charges against her as there was no basis to proffer such charges to begin with.

“The purpose of this letter is to demand that you unconditionally abandon the charges against me as there was no basis to proffer such charges. The decision to charge the accused person was not only irrational and illegal but outright malicious and it amounts to abuse of your prosecutorial mandate,” reads part of the letter.

Butterfly, whose attorneys have been demanding further particulars in order to prepare for her, have accused the prosecution of charging their client when there was no reasonable evidence to do so. Her attorney, Unoda Mack said it was surprising that the State’s response to further particulars was that the case was still under investigation and that the particulars requested would be provided upon completion of such investigations.

Mack explained that in relation to the counts of possession of unexplained property and false declaration of passport faced by the accused, the effect was the State charged her for possession of assets or properties which she did not own or have control over and which were legitimately acquired by her. “Further you charged the accused person, in count two on the basis of documents, which you do not have in your possession. It was extremely frightening that the prosecution deliberately and consciously placed such false information before court. It is deeply troubling and baffling that

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you decided to charge the accused person with count of false declaration when you do not have the very document which forms the basis of such a charge,” Mack argued. He also pointed out that the State charged the accused person for offences that it cannot substantiate as there is no evidence to support them and that it never had evidence to support the accusations as it was clear from recently leaked audio tapes involving law enforcement agencies.

He said what came out clearly from the meeting as per the said audiotapes was that the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crime never submitted any docket to the DPP in relation to the charges and that there was never any basis to charge the accused, as no evidence existed.

Furthermore, Mack accused the prosecution unit of being illegally involved in the investigation against the accused person when they did not have such powers or mandate in law.

“You do not have the powers or mandate or authority to investigate or undertake any investigations against anybody. Any purported investigation undertaken by you or officers in whatever form or shape is illegal,” he said.

As he demanded the charges to be dropped, Mack explained that prosecution took part in the investigations and then placed false information before Court against her. Lastly, as per the demand letter, Mack indicated that if the demand were not heeded he would approach the High Court to have the decision to charge and maintain charges against his client reviewed and set aside.

Butterfly currently faces charges of possession of unexplained property and false declaration of a passport while the main charge of financing terrorism was dropped by the State.



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