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Murder charge against Marikana miners withdrawn pending investigations

The National Prosecuting Authority has, following intense deliberations by the leadership of the NPA and after consulting with the leadership of the police, decided to withdraw the murder charge against the 270 Lonmin miners arrested in Marikana, pending the conclusion of investigations.

“The murder charge against the current 270 suspects, which was provisional anyway, will be formally withdrawn provisionally in court on their next court appearance. Other provisional charges will remain,” announced Advocate Nomgcobo Jiba, acting National Director of Public Prosecutions at a press briefing in Pretoria this afternoon.

She said the decision and pronouncement on final charges to be preferred against the persons involved would only be made once all investigations into the matter had been completed.

Jiba also announced that the protestors would be released conditionally on warning and their case postponed pending the finalisation of investigations, including the investigations by the Commission of Enquiry set up by President Jacob Zuma.

The release of the miners will be done in phases. “Those whose physical residential addresses that the police have been able to verify will be requisitioned for court tomorrow and an application made for their release from custody.”

Director of Public Prosecutions in the North West, Advocate Johan Smith, noted that seven suspects would be appearing for the killing of two police officers and another one suspect would be appearing in court for the murder of a security guard. These cases, he said, were separate from the 270 miners. – SAnews.gov.za

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