09 Sep 2016 17:50pm
WINDHOEK, 09 SEP (NAMPA) - Windhoek-based lawyer Dirk Conradie scored a significant victory in a legal battle in which he challenged the jurisdiction of the Namibian High Court to try him on a charge of corruption that was allegedly committed outside the country.
Conradie said the High Court of Namibia has no jurisdiction to try him on a charge under the Companies Act, because it involves an offence that was allegedly committed at a Mobile Telecommunications Limited (MTC) company board meeting held in Lisbon, Portugal on 19 June 2012.
High Court Judge Thomas Masuku withdrew the charge against the accused in a judgement handed down Friday morning.
With this charge squashed, Conradie will now only have to face the remaining corruption charges that were allegedly committed inside Namibia of which the High Court has full jurisdiction to try him.
In his successful special plea application, the accused said the corruption charge committed outside Namibia he was facing was invalid because the evidence and other related materials on which the charge is based were secured illegally and improperly and in violation of their constitutional rights.
Conradie is charged in the corruption case alongside Windhoek resident Sarah Damases.
Meanwhile, Damases was not part of the special plea application that was brought before court by Conradie.
Conradie, 56, and Damases, 51, are jointly indicted on three charges under the Anti-Corruption Act (Act 8) of 2003 for allegedly corruptly soliciting gratification to influence the procuring of a contract; corruptly using an office or position to obtain gratification and attempting or conspiring to contravene sections of the Anti-Corruption Act.
Reports carried out by 'The Namibian' newspaper have it that Conradie, who at the time was the chairperson of the MTC board of directors, solicited or demanded gratification from the directors of an advertising company, DV8 Saatchi and Saatchi, during a meeting at the offices of his law firm in Windhoek on 12 June 2012.
Senior South African defence counsel Vas Soni represented Conradie in his successful special plea application.
Windhoek-based defence lawyer James Deidericks is defending Damases in the alleged corruption case.
Deputy Prosecutor-General Ed Marondezde is defending the State.
Conradie and Damases are free on bail of N.dollars 30 000 each.