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Fishrot pre-trial conference

Fishrot pre-trial conference

This is an attempt to frustrate and buy time.


“Is this matter even ready for trial? If there is any attempts of extradition like the state says, where is the proof thereof?


There’s no disclosure, no pre-trial memorandum. If the court postpones the matter who suffers?” Defence lawyer Trevor Brockerhoff argued, saying that he has for the longest time been requesting for the disclosure from the state


Defence Lawyer Richard Metcalfe, who represents Bernard Esau and Tamson Hatuikulipi, said that the copy of the indictment was only served to his clients yesterday.


According to him, the state had previously said investigations in the two cases are complete, and that the state would be ready today.


“The state had also indicated then that the two matters would be joned. Today the state is requesting for a joinder and a postponement to May. It is just a tactic to gain more time. I don’t think any defense lawyer would, today have an issue with the two cases being joined. I request that the court makes an order for the state to provide the disclosure in hardcopy,” Metcalfe said.


According to him, this will make it less difficult to leak the documents.
Metcalfe argues that the disclosure is also necessary for defense lawyers to know which witnesses to consult for purposes of the defense.


Metcalfe has requested that Judge Liebenberg give the state a period of no longer than 2 to 3 weeks to provide the hardcopy disclosure, summary of substantial facts, list of witnesses and addresses of witnesses, and a copy of the pre-trial memorandum and not months.


Germaine Muchali, who represents Nigel van Wyk says if the matter is to be joined to the Fishcor matter, it becomes a problem. He says the application would be unconstitutional.


“The state is clearly not ready for trial,” he said.


Lawyer James Diedericks argued that there’s no control over the distribution of the dockets in the public domain.


He questioned who the order is to be made against. He described the state’s application as bizarre.


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