South Africa arrests 8 officers assigned to nation’s vp for freeway brutality

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — Eight law enforcement officials assigned to a safety crew for the South African vp appeared in courtroom on Monday on assault and different expenses after they had been filmed kicking and stomping two off-duty trainee troopers whose automobile they stopped on a Johannesburg freeway.

Plainclothes VIP safety officers had been driving in a convoy escorting Vice President Paul Mashatile once they dragged the 2 males from their automobile and attacked them earlier this month. A few of the officers carried assault rifles.

One of many trainees was kicked unconscious within the assault, which was filmed by one other motorist and shared broadly on social media.

The automobile carrying Mashatile continued to his home and the vp was not current when the alleged assaults occurred. Mashatile condemned the conduct of the officers, who had been suspended from their jobs.

The eight officers had been arrested on Sunday and held at a Johannesburg police station earlier than showing in courtroom for a bail listening to on Monday. No choice has been made on their eligibility for bail.

One of many officers testified that they stopped the automobile as a result of it was driving too near Mashatile’s automobile and was seen as a risk.

The officers are a part of a VIP safety unit identified in South Africa because the ‘blue mild brigade’ and which have a status for driving dangerously quick and reacting with pointless power if the vehicles don’t draw back instantly. The unit usually operates in unmarked autos with blue sirens.

The witness’ video sparked outrage in a rustic that has an issue with police brutality.

They’re accused of assaulting three males, though the video solely reveals them kicking and stomping on two males whereas a 3rd stands subsequent to them. A lady who was additionally touring within the automobile is seen standing together with her fingers within the air as officers assault the boys.

Officers had been touring in two black SUVs and are seen getting again into their autos and driving off, leaving one of many males mendacity immobile on the facet of the busy freeway.

Prosecutors and the Unbiased Police Investigations Department, which investigates police misconduct, stated the eight individuals can be charged with assault, malicious harm to property and firearms offences.

A union that represents members of the armed forces stated all of the victims of the assault had been a part of the South African military, though they weren’t in service on the time.


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