• In what ways did the lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic impact on the illegal drug trade? We explore how traders changed their modi operandi in an article published from p14 in Servamus: June 2022.

  • Dogs are known for their excellent sense of smell. Read our article published from p30 in Servamus: June 2022 about how a South African company has trained dogs to also detect COVID-19.

  • The floods of April 2022 caused havoc and death in KwaZulu-Natal. Fortunately, hundreds of search and rescue specialists used their skills to help search for those who were in need. Refer to an article published from p36 in Servamus: June 2022.

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Compiled by Kotie Geldenhuys

“I am the victim of a grave miscarriage of justice, I was falsely accused, arrested on 9 November 1995, denied bail, then tried and convicted for the murder of my husband, Mandla Anthony Aarif Fakude,” said Amy Fakude from Ekurhuleni after spending 15 years behind bars (Naidu, 2020). Amy is one of many people who went through the trauma of being falsely accused, prosecuted and convicted for a crime they did not commit.

All law-abiding citizens rely on the sentencing of people accused of crime in a court of law. We put our faith in the science behind the evidence to keep our communities safe from criminals. Many people trust the system and believe that someone is guilty when declared guilty and innocent when acquitted. But what if the presiding officer has made a mistake or the evidence has been tampered with resulting in innocent people serving time for crimes they did not commit, while the real criminals still roam the streets. In this month’s Crime Series (refer to p42), it was clear how the criminal justice system has failed the late Inge Lotz and her family as well how an innocent person could have been convicted for a crime he did not commit.

There are many examples in South Africa of how innocent people have been convicted wrongly. Mu-Aalima Amyna (Amy) Fakude, who was arrested along with family members and others in connection of her husband’s murder, was sentenced to 35 years’ incarceration on 13 February 1997 in the Witwatersrand Local Division of the High Court. “I was punished for a crime I did not commit. My arrest for the murder of my husband was based on fraudulent evidence. The evidence presented had been ‘trumped up’. There was no evidence that put me at the scene of the crime … Upon my arrest and trial, the file containing the original case docket and all the information collated at the time my husband was found dead went missing from police records and was never recovered. The initial investigating officer appointed to the case disappeared and was never traced. The evidence in my defence disappeared when my file disappeared from police records,” she said. The result was that original evidence was never made available during the trial. As substitute for the original evidence, fabricated evidence was used to place her on the crime scene. Witness testimony was fabricated and witnesses were forced, coerced, coached and even promised money for giving false evidence. Witnesses who visited Ms Fakude in prison confirmed this. “I certainly declare that the witnesses in my case were falsely identified, as I subsequently learnt from them that each witness had been paid R25 000” (Naidu, 2020).

She appealed her conviction, but on 19 November 2000, the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) in Bloemfontein only reduced her sentence from 35 years’ incarceration to 25 years’ incarceration. She made several unsuccessful efforts during her incarceration to have her case reviewed by the SA Human Rights Commission and public protector. After spending 15 years behind bars, she was released on parole on 1 September 2010. Her parole ended on 13 August 2020 (Naidu, 2020).

Then there was the case of convicted murderers Samuel “Sampie” Khanye and Victor Moyo who spent 14 years behind bars for a crime they did not commit, before it was proven in court that they were innocent. Since they were arrested in 2003, along with six others, for the hijacking and murder of W/O Dingaan Makuna, a policeman from Mothutlung, the two claimed that they were innocent. Hoping that truth would prevail, Mr Khanye agreed to participate in a prison Victim-Offender Dialogue (VOD) programme, to meet W/O Makuna’s family and “tell the truth” to help both obtain psychological closure. “I told the truth … I said I never committed the murder…,” he said. Mr Moyo refused to meet the family: “I never killed anyone. I know nothing about this crime. The worst part was no-one believed me. I saw a psychologist but all she could tell me was 'be strong’.”

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[This is an extract of an article published in Servamus: April 2022. If you are interested in reading the rest of the article that reminds us that this is a global problem, discusses the reasons for wrongful convictions, the cost of appealing such a conviction, legislation dealing with such cases, and what can be done to address the issue, send an e-mail to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to find out what you need to do. Ed.]

Servamus - June 2022

According to the World Drug Report for 2021, as released by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), drug use resulted in the deaths of almost half a million people in 2019 (UNODC, 2021).
By Kotie Geldenhuys
In December 2011, 38-year-old Janice Bronwyn Linden from Durban was executed in China.
By Kotie Geldenhuys
WhatsApp and Telegram have become popular tools to send messages quickly and at almost no cost.
By Annalise Kempen
We all know someone who has been struggling with an addiction - ranging from prescription medication to illegal drugs, alcohol to gambling or even shopping.
Compiled by Annalise Kempen

Pollex - June 2022

Section 304(4) of the Criminal Procedure Act 51 of 1977 (“the CPA”) provides as follows:
Read More - S v Essop (Case no 432/2020) [2021] ZASCA 66 (1 June 2021) (SCA)
Mr Aadiel Essop, the accused, pleaded guilty before the regional court (“the trial court”) on 45 counts of contravening section 24B(1)(a) of the Films and Publications Act 65 of 1996 (hereinafter referred to as the “Publications Act”), as well as one count of common law kidnapping (Afrikaans: “gemenereg menseroof”).
Read More - Minister of Justice (First Appellant) and Minister of Police (Second Appellant) v Masia 2021 (2) SACR 425 (GP)
Picture the following: On 6 August 2013, Mr Thabo Toka Mack Masia (hereinafter referred to as “Masia”) presented himself by appointment at the Atteridgeville Magistrates’ Court in Pretoria before a maintenance (“papgeld”) officer for an enquiry in terms of the Maintenance Act 99 of 1998 pertaining to the maintenance of his minor child.
Read More - S v Albro Mclean. Case no: (A112/21) [2021] ZAWCHC158 High Court Cape Town dated 12 August 2021 and 2021(2) SACR 437 (WCC)
Mr Albro Mclean, the accused, was convicted of rape in the Wynberg regional court in the Cape Peninsula whereupon he was sentenced to life incarceration.

Letters - June 2022

On Monday 9 May 2022, the National Commissioner of the SAPS, Gen Fannie Masemola along with members of his management team conducted a site visit at the joint operational centre (JOC) for search and rescue teams at the Virginia Airport in Durban.
Saturday 14 May 2022 was to be yet another day of search, rescue and recovery operations in the disaster areas of KwaZulu-Natal following the flood devastation a few weeks earlier.
June Magazine Cover

Servamus' Mission

Servamus is a community-based safety and security magazine for both members of the community as well as safety and security practitioners with the aim of increasing knowledge and sharing information, dedicated to improving their expertise, professionalism and service delivery standards. It promotes sound crime management practices, freedom of speech, education, training, information sharing and a networking platform.