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South African ex-spy chief sues president over alleged crimes

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A former head of South African intelligence agency has sued president Cyril Ramaphosa for alleged crimes that include “kidnapping” and bribing robbers who stole millions of dollars from one of his properties.

Arthur Fraser accuses the president of concealing a theft incident in which alleged criminals entered Ramaphosa’s property and were caught after stealing $4 million.

He claims the suspects were subsequently kidnapped, interrogated and paid off to keep silent about the February 9 2020 incident.

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The office of the president says Ramaphosa has been made aware of the case and will respond in due course.

“I have taken the unprecedented step to lay criminal charges against his excellency, the president of the Republic of South Africa, Cyril Ramaphosa,” Fraser said in a statement.

The former spy chief says he had provided police with evidence “including photographs, bank accounts, video footage and names”.

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He argues that Ramaphosa’s conduct was in breach of a law on the prevention of organised crime.

Police have confirmed to local media that a criminal case had been opened against Ramaphosa and that due process will follow.

Fraser became chief of the country’s correctional services after his career in intelligence and was the one who last year ordered the release from prison on medical grounds of former president Jacob Zuma. —BBC

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