First Thing, Daily Maverick's flagship newsletter

Join the 230 000 South Africans who read First Thing newsletter.

Charl Kinnear: Phone recordings reveal how hand grenade...

Maverick Citizen


Charl Kinnear: Phone recordings reveal how hand grenade incident was plotted and executed

Charl Kinnear. (Photo: Noor Slamdien)

Amaal Jantjies, one of three accused linked to a hand grenade incident at the house of murdered Anti-Gang Unit section head, Lieutenant-Colonel Charl Kinnear, said in her evidence that she was at home at the time of the incident. But GPS coordinates and cell phone billing show she was not and at one point placed her near Heideveld and Surrey Estate.

Much of the proceedings in the Parow Regional Court on Thursday were overshadowed by the State playing cellphone recordings Amaal Jantjies made on her two phones, which investigators seized at the time of her arrest.

GPS coordinates showed that Jantjies was in Gearing Street, Bishop Lavis, near Kinnear’s house, where she met Farez Smith, alias Mamokie. The two, with Janick Adonis, are facing charges of conspiracy to commit murder and procuring explosives related to the hand grenade incident that occurred in the early hours of 23 November 2019 at Kinnear’s house.

Jantjies was not happy with the cellphone recordings handed in by the State and argued they were not a true reflection of all the recordings on her two phones seized. She is adamant that the State selected certain recordings and believes that most of her recordings were deleted.

Jantjies’ bail application is before the court, while Smith and Adonis, already sentenced in another matter, are not applying for bail. Smith was arrested in Gearing Street on 23 November 2019 after he was caught in possession of the hand grenade. Jantjies was arrested the following morning.

On Thursday, the court heard from Jantjies that the purpose of the staged hand grenade incident was to pin the incident on an underworld figure who had allegedly been threatening Anti-Gang Unit head André Lincoln. The State has indicated it knows the identity of this underworld figure who has allegedly forged a corrupt relationship with an Anti-Gang Unit member.

Jantjies testified in the Parow Regional Court on 21 January that both Kinnear and Lincoln had orchestrated the grenade being found outside Kinnear’s home so that they could pin the apparent crime on someone who had been threatening them.

She further claimed that she attended a meeting with Lincoln on 13 November 2019 at the Anti-Gang Unit base to plot the incident, but State prosecutor Blaine Lazarus produced evidence that, at that time, Lincoln had been in Gauteng.

The cellphone recordings played showed the hand grenade plan getting into full swing after 9pm on 22 November 2019, when the grenade was handed to Jantjies by a Manie Benjamin in Macassar. In exchange, two firearms were handed to Benjamin in a bag, the court heard.

Jantjies doesn’t dispute that she collected the hand grenade and told the court: “I knew the hand grenade was without explosives and I needed gloves to handle it. The instructions were that Smith’s fingerprints must be left on the hand grenade.”

She said she returned home and stayed there because it was too late and didn’t want to leave her children alone.

“In your evidence in chief, you said you were at home because you didn’t want to leave your kids alone at home. But at 23.07.51 you made a call to Smith and told him you were near Manenberg police station.

“You couldn’t have been at home. Your phone billing tells a completely different story. At 23:07pm, your cellphone location placed you near Heideveld and Surrey Estate,” Lazarus said.

Lazarus also put it to Jantjies that when she made this call she was in a car to pick up Smith. She denied this, saying, “I did not pick up Smith because I was at home. He came to my house and we sat in the car and talked.”

But the prosecution argued that Jantjies had changed her version on different occasions and that it was impossible that she was at home.

Even when magistrate Richard Sikhwivhilu put it to her that the GPS coordinates placed her at the corner of Arries and Klipfontein Road, the accused still maintained that she was at home.

Jantjies told the court that she was agitated and drained by the line of questioning by the State, and the repeating of the same question.

Sikhwivhilu told her: “You cannot control this process. You brought this bail application. We are here because of you and unfortunately you have to answer the questions put to you.”

Further phone recordings made at 23:10 on 22 November 2019 also proved the accused was not at home.

According to the 23:30 recording played in court, Mamokie could be heard saying, “I’m near the road” and Jantjies told him she was near a pub.

Questioned by Lazarus on what she showed Adonis, she replied: “I showed Mamokie the road where Kinnear lived, because this was the instruction and part of the plan received from Lincoln.”

Summarising the evidence presented by the State and replies from the accused, Lazarus said: “The purpose of the whole hand grenade plan orchestrated by Lincoln was to obtain evidence so that they can arrest an underground figure. How would this have helped getting evidence to arrest a person?”

Replying, Jantjies said she didn’t know how this would have helped Lincoln arrest an underground person, but Smith might know.

The proceedings concluded when Lazarus asked what would have happened to Smith and whether it had been part of the plan to eventually kill him. 

Jantjies’ bail application will continue on 8 April. DM/MC


Comments - share your knowledge and experience

Please note you must be a Maverick Insider to comment. Sign up here or sign in if you are already an Insider.

Everybody has an opinion but not everyone has the knowledge and the experience to contribute meaningfully to a discussion. That’s what we want from our members. Help us learn with your expertise and insights on articles that we publish. We encourage different, respectful viewpoints to further our understanding of the world. View our comments policy here.

No Comments, yet

Please peer review 3 community comments before your comment can be posted