Shaky start as Thales advocate irritates judges in Zuma corruption case

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French arms company Thales’ bid for a permanent stay of prosecution got off to shaky start in the Pietermaritzburg High Court on Tuesday as judges continuously criticised its arguments.

Judge Thoba Poyo-Dlwati told Thales’ advocate Anton Katz that he was repeating parts of his presentation, while judge Esther Steyn said she sounded like a broken record when reminding him that he was reading parts of the National Prosecuting Authority Act in isolation to suit his argument.

“When you make the argument over and over, we lose it. Let’s just digest it. Sometimes a lawyer makes a good argument but ruins it by repeating themselves,” said Poyo-Dlwati.

Despite the subtle warning, Katz continued to repeat technical arguments to show that former National Director of Public Prosections (NDPP) Shaun Abrahams acted irrationally when he instituted corruption charges against Thales.

He said it was a “hell-bent, knee-jerk, status quo” decision.





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