All three men involved in the murder of mining magnate Brett Kebble have now testified, and have admitted that drug dealer Glenn Agliotti was not directly responsible for the killing.
Faizel “Kappie” Smith, boxer Mikey Schultz and former bouncer Nigel McGurk all testified that they had planned and carried out the shooting of Allan Gray’s former chief investment officer Stephen Mildenhall in Cape Town in August 2005, and the “assisted-suicide” of Kebble a month later in Melrose, Johannesburg.
Kebble trial beginsConvicted drug trafficker Glen Agliotti arrived at the South Gauteng High Court on Monday morning to begin his first day in the dock for his alleged role in the “assisted suicide” of slain mining magnate Brett
Smith agreed with Agliotti’s counsel Laurance Hodes under cross-examination that Agliotti had played no part in conspiring to shoot either Mildenhall or Kebble.
On Wednesday Smith, went into greater detail of how he had helped arrange the hit on Mildenhall.
‘They should just hurt him’
Upon arriving in Cape Town, “I went to see one of my family members in Claremont,” said Smith.
“This man in Cape Town [Mildenhall] — I’d never met him or seen him, I just had his address … I asked my family member if he had anyone to help us sort out the problem. We just wanted the guy taken out of action for a while. When we went to the taxi rank, he introduced us to a guy called Ben, I don’t know what the other guy’s name was. He [the family member] explained the whole problem that we had. He told them that they shouldn’t kill him, they should just hurt him.”
Mildenhall was shot in order to prevent him from causing difficulties relating to the awarding of a loan by Investec to Kebble’s company, JCI.
However, Mildenhall was shot the day after the loan agreement had been signed.
Allan Gray had significant control over three of Kebble’s companies — JCI, Randgold & Exploration (R&E) and Western Areas. However, when JCI required a loan from Investec, Allan Gray advised that it should only be granted on provision that Kebble be removed from the board of JCI, and that the boards of all three companies be reconstituted so that Kebble had no control over operations. JCI and R&E had earlier been suspended from the Johannesburg Stock Exchange as a result of failing to issue their financial statements on time.
Mildenhall, who flew to Johannesburg from the United Kingdom — where he now lives — testified earlier on Wednesday. He told the court how he was shot by the two hitmen as he arrived home from work following a radio interview regarding the loan agreement on August 31 2005.
‘Both men shot me’
“I arrived home at about ten past seven. I drove in and parked next to my wife’s car, closed the electronic gate, got out of the car and noticed two men with guns get out of car parked outside the driveway of my house.” He said the men came in through a pedestrian gate.
“I gave them my wallet, and my car keys and my cellphone … They asked me to go with them, I clearly wasn’t going to … I backed away to the carport. As I was doing that, both men shot me … twice in my left shoulder and once in my right shoulder. I lay on the ground and waited for their car to drive away.”
His wife then drove him to Claremont Hospital, where he remained in intensive care for three days.
“I was very fortunate … I still have some pain and some restricted movement in my left shoulder.”
The two shooters have never been arrested.
The Kebble murder trial got under way on Monday after numerous postponements since Agliotti’s arrest in November 2006.
Agliotti pleaded not guilty to four charges.
State prosecutor Dan Dakana added two more charges to the indictment against Agliotti on Monday morning. They are the attempted murder of Mildenhall and conspiracy to murder Mildenhall and mining bosses Danie Nortier, Mark Bristow and Mark Wellesley-Wood.
The two other charges against Agliotti are the murder of Kebble and conspiracy to murder Kebble.
The Scorpions, who took over the murder investigation from the police in 2006, have been criticised for dishing out indemnity agreements to Nassif, Schultz and other people implicated in the murder. The state has argued that Agliotti and Kebble’s former business associate, John Stratton, were the masterminds behind the hit.
Stratton now lives in Australia and efforts to extradite him to South Africa have been under way for a number of years.