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AGE OF THE ASSASSIN

Charl Kinnear murder trial set for witness testimony after Nafiz Modack lawyer appointed

Charl Kinnear murder trial set for witness testimony after Nafiz Modack lawyer appointed
Nafiz Modack inspects a document in court on 5 May 2023. (Photo: Daily Maverick)

An advocate has finally been appointed to represent alleged underworld figure Nafiz Modack, accused of murdering the Anti-Gang Unit’s Lieutenant-Colonel Charl Kinnear on 18 September 2020.

The name of Nafiz Modack’s legal representative, advocate Mohamed Sibda, was read into the record before Judge Robert Henney in the Charl Kinnear murder trial in the Western Cape High Court in Cape Town on Monday.

That concluded a three-week battle to sort out Modack’s legal representation after it was revealed at the start of the trial that he did not have a lawyer, leading to further delays in the case, which has taken years to get to court.

Modack had applied for Legal Aid, but wanted to choose a lawyer, which is not how the process works, before finally accepting Legal Aid’s decision to appoint Sibda.

Read more in Daily Maverick: Modack and co-accused plead not guilty to a murder in big Kinnear case amid tight high court security

Sibda plans to consult with Modack on Tuesday and Wednesday to determine whether they will enter a plea explanation, what outstanding documents they still need from the State, and how to prepare their defence.

Legal Aid SA has also appointed a legal representative for Modack’s co-accused Zane Kilian and Jacques Cronje. Former Anti-Gang Unit officer Ashley Tabisher is representing himself.

Of the 15 accused, the only person still without legal representation is Modack’s brother Yaseen, who is out on bail and charged with money laundering. This is despite his telling Judge Henney on Friday, 16 February, that he had arranged for a lawyer.

On Monday, Judge Henney warned Yaseen Modack that he was causing unnecessary delays and that he needed to arrange for legal representation before Thursday, 22 February. Henney said the court expected to start hearing the testimony of witnesses on Monday, 26 February.

Read more in Daily Maverick: ‘Cops killed Kinnear and I have proof’, Nafiz Modack tells high court

Nafiz Modack and Kilian are the main accused in the killing of Kinnear on 18 September 2020. It is also the State’s contention that Nafiz Modack conspired with Kilian to murder lawyer William Booth on 9 April 2020.

The 15 accused face 124 charges, which include murder, racketeering, contravention of the Prevention of Organised Crime Act, conspiracy to commit murder, money laundering and the illegal interception of cellphone communications.

The State claims that Kilian carried out electronic surveillance, also known as pinging, on Nafiz Modack’s orders and that Modack paid Kilian almost R100,000 to do this.

Kilian allegedly unlawfully tracked cellphones belonging to Kinnear, Booth, alleged 28s gang boss Ralph Stanfield and City of Cape Town Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security JP Smith, among others. 

When the trial resumes on Monday, 26 February, State Prosecutor Greg Wolmarans will present the court with an overview of the State’s case against the accused. DM

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