Police officer appears alongside Modack in Bishop Lavis court

By Sisonke Mlamla Time of article published37m ago

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Cape Town – The case against Ashley Tabisher, 39, an Anti-Gang Unit officer stationed at Faure, has been postponed to Monday next week.

Tabisher, who appeared in the Bishop Lavis Magistrate’s Court on charges of corruption, was arrested at the weekend on suspicion of forwarding information to unsavoury characters operating in the Western Cape underworld.

Tabisher appeared in court alongside an alleged underworld figure, Nafiz Modack, on Tuesday morning.

Hawks spokesperson Katlego Mogale said it was reported that the suspect was arrested during an intelligence-driven operation conducted by the National Task Team investigating gang-related activities, the National Intervention Unit and the Tactical Response Team.

“It’s alleged that the suspect had been enticed, between 2019 and 2020, by an underworld figure to infiltrate the Anti-Gang Unit and supply them with information relating to operations of the underworld figure in return for gratification,” said Mogale.

According to Mogale, the suspect was charged with corruption, together with three accomplices, including Modack.

Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union spokesperson Richard Mamabolo said it was unfortunate that anyone who was entrusted with preventing crime might find themselves involved in acts that they had taken an oath to prevent.

Police Minister Bheki Cele said being a police officer was an onerous job, but warned officers to “keep your blue. If you don’t want to keep your blue, we won’t hesitate to convert it into orange (prison dress).

“The officer who allegedly opted to be greedy and worked with the underworld was not one of us. That’s a truth in the sun. It was his choice, so he must live with his choice.”

Corruption Watch’s head of stakeholder relations and campaigns, Kavisha Pillay, said from their perspective, corruption was rife in the SAPS.

Pillay said they had received close to 3 000 complaints a year from whistle-blowers among the public relating to corruption in the police force.

“It is definitely a problem in South Africa. It is definitely a problem that communities are experiencing, where, for example, in this case in particular, a police officer who was meant to be a law-enforcing officer and uphold the law has allegedly put a price tag on our law,” said Pillay.

She said communities have lost respect for the police, and police management needed stronger accountability mechanisms within departments and needed to “clean up their act quickly”.

The chairperson of the community safety standing committee in the Western Cape Legislature, Reagan Allen, said a recent reply to a parliamentary question indicated that 52% of investigated police officers in the Western Cape had been found guilty of corruption since 2009.

Allen said at least 1 303 corruption investigations were undertaken, and 680 officers were found guilty. He said more than 300 officers implicated in corruption had been dismissed, while lesser sanctions were imposed on others.

“Though this means that more than half of the corruption cases among the police in the Western Cape were found guilty,” said Allen.

He said they commended the efforts to fight corruption but sought further clarity on the time frames for investigations to be concluded.

Cape Argus

Credit IOL