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Heist is an in-depth look at 10 of South Africa’s most audacious heists.
From the 1996 ‘burning man’ case, where four security guards were burnt alive in their armoured vehicle after a ferocious fight-back against highly trained mercenaries, to the 2016 robbery of a cash centre in Witbank, where a gang made off with almost R107 million after impersonating police officers, this is an impeccably researched reconstruction of an endemic crime phenomenon that some analysts warn could bring South Africa to its knees. Using the information gleaned from thousands of pages of court documents and press reports, as well as interviews with scores of police officers, crime-intelligence agents, prosecutors, defence lawyers, researchers, journalists, security guards and the criminals themselves, Heist gives unprecedented insight into a type of crime that increased by a staggering 49 per cent in the first eight months of 2017 alone.
As informative and thought-provoking as it is distressing, this is a book by an investigative journalist at the top of her game.
Nothing in life is certain, except death and taxes – or so the expression goes. And over the past two decades South African criminals and tax dodgers have come to realise this truth the hard way.
Tax sleuth Johann van Loggerenberg was at the centre of many of SARS’ high-profile cases during his time there. As far as SARS is concerned all forms of income are subjected to tax, even if by ill-gotten means. Whether you are a drug dealer from Durban, one of the hitmen who shot Brett Kebble or soccer boss Irvin Khoza, you have to pay your dues!
Van Loggerenberg relates the riveting inside stories of the investigations into businessmen like Dave King, Billy Rautenbach, Barry Tannenbaum and his ponzi scheme, and others. Over the years he got to know all the scams and dirty tricks in the book and he explains these in plain language.
In these investigations the tax authority worked closely with the police, the NPA and the Directorate of Special Operations. However, after a few years SARS became the victim of its own success. In telling the stories of how tax evaders were caught, Van Loggerenberg also shows how the power struggle between different state departments and the phenomenon of state capture in recent years started crippling SARS.
As a follow up to the bestselling >Killing Kebble: An Underworld Exposed (2010), the new book from Mandy Wiener examines how organised crime, gangsters and powerful political figures have been able to capture the law enforcement authorities and agencies.
These various organisations have been eviscerated, hollowed out and left ineffective. They have been infiltrated and compromised and, as a result, prominent underworld figures have been able to flourish in South Africa, setting up elaborate networks of crime with the assistance of many cops.
The criminal justice system has been left exposed and it is crucial that the South African public knows about the capture that has occurred on different levels.
Op Dinsdag 5 Desember 2017 was die Steinhoff-groep nog R199 miljard werd. Vier en twintig uur later is meer as R160 miljard daarvan uitgewis. Die Steinhoff-sakeryk, wat oor 20 jaar tot ’n internasionale sakereus opgebou is, het oornag verkrummel.
Markus Jooste, Steinhoff se flambojante grootbaas, het per SMS bedank en vlug sedertdien van die een na die ander geraamte wat uit sy kas val: tientalle spoghuise vir ’n blonde minnares, resiesperde, bewerings van bedrog en ’n blinkswart Jaguar vir ’n ou universiteitskoshuis.
Wat presies het hier gebeur? Wie het wat geweet? Wat is Steinhoff, wie is Markus Jooste en wat het dit met die sogenaamde Stellenbosch-mafia te doen? Hoe pas Christo Wiese, Shoprite en Pepkor in en waarheen is die pensionarisse se geld? Die bekende sakeskrywer James-Brent Styan beantwoord dié en ander vrae in hierdie verstommende verhaal van die grootste finansiële ineenstoring in die geskiedenis van Suid-Afrika.
Deur onderhoude met betroubare bronne, inligting uit vertroulike dokumente en in- dieptenavorsing oor Steinhoff se geskiedenis, onthul hy dít wat die groep oor jare probeer wegsteek het.
Steinhoff en die Stellenbosse Boys is ’n boeiende sakeriller wat nog dekades lank in sowel raadsale as sitkamers oorvertel sal word.
Kan dwelms, jaloesie en geld ’n normale 20-jarige daartoe dryf om byna sy hele gesin met ’n byl uit te wis?
Die Van Breda’s van Stellenbosch was skynbaar die perfekte gesin. Skatryk, suksesvol en gewild. In die luukse De Zalze-landgoed het hulle ’n droomlewe gelei.
En toe verander alles in ’n oogwink. Die land is tot stilstand geruk deur die nuus van Martin en sy vrou, Teresa, en hul 22-jarige seun Rudi se grumoorde. Die blondekop tiener, Marli, het net-net oorleef, maar kan weens ’n breinbesering niks van dié noodlottige nag onthou nie.
Mettertyd word die ander seun, Henri, wat ongeskonde is en weet wat werklik gebeur het, aangekla van die driedubbele moord.
Dan begin familie en vriende een-vir-een praat. Hulle skets ’n prentjie van ouers wat raadop was met hul moeilike “eenkantkind”. Henri se dwelmverslawing het blykbaar tot “groot onmin” in die huis gelei en hy was glo “die moer in” vir sy ouers omdat sy broer, Rudi, voorgetrek is.
Kan dit wees dat die Van Breda’s se eie kind die byl gelig het?
Hulle lieg, bedrieg, gee voor. Hulle verdraai, verdoesel, verduister, verwoes. Geleidelik palm hulle jou vertroue in. Dan, eensklaps, is jy jou geld, status en reputasie kwyt. Só oortuigend doen hulle dit dat selfs die slimste, mees ingeligte mense ’n rat voor die oë gedraai word en eers besef wat hulle getref het nadat grootskaalse skade aangerig is en die gladdebek soos mis voor die son verdwyn het. Maar selfs swendelaars kom hulle moses teë...
Boereverneukers vertel die stories van Afrikaanses wat van ons land se grootste skelmstreke gepleeg het.
Van die karakters is minder bekend by die publiek, maar ander het byna mitiese status in die Afrikaanse psige verwerf, soos die kubuskoning Adriaan Nieuwoudt, die pynmasjienman Gervan Lubbe, die kamma-pediater André Esterhuizen, die Hertzogville-profeet David Francis en die Trustbank-rowers Derek Whitehead en Antonie van der Merwe.
Dalk het jý ook deurgeloop, maar praat tot vandag toe nie graag daaroor nie.
Courage, perseverance, and a chase across three oceans.
The infamous poaching vessel Thunder, wanted by Interpol, evaded justice for more than 10 years. Catching endangered species and destroying ocean habitats in the process, it illegally made as much as R90 million a year. Captain Hammarstedt and the crew of the Bob Barker relentlessly pursued the Thunder to bring it to justice, and helped to expose a global poaching network.
When you next sit down at your local coffee shop, look around you: there may just be a professional hitman sitting at the next table. As author Mark Shaw reveals in this highly original and informative book, the ‘upper world’ sails perilously close to the underworld.
Hitmen For Hire takes the reader on a journey like no other, navigating a world of hammermen (hitmen), informers, rogue policemen, taxi bosses, gang leaders and crooked businessmen. The book examines a system in which contract killings have become the norm, looking at who arranges hits, where to find a hitman, and even what it is like to be a hitman – or woman.
Since 1994, South Africa has witnessed some spectacular underworld killings associated with various industries and sectors. Drawing on over a thousand cases, from 2000 to 2016, Shaw reveals how these murders have an outsized impact on the evolution of both legal and illegal economic activity.
Enemy Of The People is the first definitive account of Zuma’s catastrophic misrule, offering eyewitness descriptions and cogent analysis of how South Africa was brought to its knees – and how a nation fought back.
When Jacob Zuma took over the leadership of the ANC one muggy Polokwane evening in December 2007, he inherited a country where GDP was growing by more than 6% per annum, a party enjoying the support of two-thirds of the electorate, and a unified tripartite alliance. Today, South Africa is caught in the grip of a patronage network, the economy is floundering and the ANC is staring down the barrel of a defeat at the 2019 general elections. How did we get here?
Zuma first brought to heel his party, Africa’s oldest and most revered liberation movement, subduing and isolating dissidents associated with his predecessor Thabo Mbeki. Then saw the emergence of the tenderpreneur and those attempting to capture the state, as well as a network of family, friends and business associates that has become so deeply embedded that it has, in effect, replaced many parts of government. Zuma opened up the state to industrial-scale levels of corruption, causing irreparable damage to state enterprises, institutions of democracy, and the ANC itself.
But it hasn’t all gone Zuma’s way. Former allies have peeled away. A new era of activism has arisen and outspoken civil servants have stepped forward to join a cross-section of civil society and a robust media. As a divided ANC square off for the elective conference in December, where there is everything to gain or to lose, award-winning journalists Adriaan Basson and Pieter du Toit offer a brilliant and up-to-date account of the Zuma era.
The Guptas, arguably South Africa’s most infamous family, have dominated news headlines for many years. But the landing of a commercial airliner packed with wedding guests at Air Force Base Waterkloof in 2013 sparked the most severe onslaught of public outrage the politically connected family had endured up to that fateful day. Since then, they have become embroiled in allegations of state capture, of dishing out cabinet posts to officials who would do their bidding, and of benefiting from lucrative state contracts and dubious loans.
The Republic Of Gupta examines the various controversies surrounding the family and explores the path that took the brothers Ajay, Atul and Rajesh Gupta from an obscure town in India to the inner circle of South African president Jacob Zuma.
This book investigates:
Unpacking these and other questions, Pieter-Louis Myburgh delves deeper than ever before into the Guptas’ business dealings and their links to prominent South African politicians, and explains how one family managed to transform an entire country into The Republic Of Gupta.
How to Steal a City is an insider account of this intervention, which lays bare how the administration was entirely captured and bled dry by a criminal syndicate, how factional politics within the ruling party abetted that corruption, and how a comprehensive clean-up was eventually conducted.
It is written as a gripping real-life thriller, taking the reader deeper and deeper into the rotten heart of the city. As a former senior government official and local government “fixer”, Crispian Olver was no stranger to dealing with dodgy politicians and broken organisations. Yet what he found was graft that went far beyond the dodgy contracts, blatant conflicts of interest and garden-variety kickbacks he had seen before. It had evolved into a web far more sophisticated and deep rooted than he had ever imagined, involving mazes of shell companies, assassinations, criminal syndicates, and compromised local politicians. The metro was effectively controlled by a criminal network, closely allied to a dominant local ANC faction. What he found was complete state capture—a microcosm of what has been happening in South Africa’s national government.
But there was a personal price to pay. Intense political pressure and threats to his personal safety took a toll on his mental and physical health. He had to have a full-time bodyguard, and never maintained a regular routine. He eventually lost much of his political cover. Olver ultimately had to flee the city as the forces stacked against him started to wreak their revenge.
This is his story.
Inspired by the fortunes and misfortunes of the Getty family, whose most extraordinary and troubled episode - the kidnap and ransom of grandson Paul Getty - is now a major motion picture, directed by Ridley Scott, from a screenplay written by David Scarpa and starring Michelle Williams, Christopher Plummer and Mark Wahlberg.
In 2016 South African film audiences were mesmerised by the film Noem My Skollie, which was written by - and based on the life of - John W. Fredericks. In this book Fredericks tells the full story on which the film was based.
Growing up in a dusty township on the Cape Flats, Fredericks formed a gang with his friends, and at the age of seventeen he was arrested for robbery and sentenced to two years in Pollsmoor prison. There the number gangs vied to initiate him into their ranks, but he resisted their advances, offering instead to help them push their time by telling stories. And so he became the prison ‘cinema’, drawing on his storytelling abilities and cementing his ambition to become a writer.
Life after prison became a nightmare when he was arrested for a murder he hadn’t committed, his childhood friends were sentenced to die on the gallows, and a gang boss tried to kill him. Slowly he turned his life around, getting a job and building a family, but society kept judging him as a gangster. Struggling to deal with his past, he turned to storytelling again, and painstakingly learnt the art of scriptwriting. The result was Noem My Skollie, which was watched by almost 90 000 people and won numerous awards.
Written in a powerful and authentic voice, Skollie is a gripping memoir of life on the Cape Flats, of prison and gangs, and of one man’s struggle to survive all this by telling stories.
It is April 1997, a Monday. A young mother gives birth to a girl in Cape Town's Groote Schuur Hospital. On the Wednesday, 48 hours later, the mother's life is turned upside down when it is discovered that her baby has been stolen. Then, 17 years later, the girl is reunited with her biological family in the most unlikely manner imaginable after she was discovered at school by her younger sister - a split image of herself. This book tells the tale of what is called "an extraordinary story of hope and serendipity" by M-Net's award-winning Carte Blanche programme.
It is a story that touched newspaper readers, website visitors, radio listeners and television viewers across the globe: "Such an amazing story," commented Oprah's best friend, Gail King, the co-anchor of This Morning on CBS in America. A Home For Zephany records the tale, as it played out until now, through the voices of the girl's biological parents, Morne and Celeste Nurse, extended family members, neighbours, newspaper archives, Facebook posts, letter and SMS writers, radio and television presenters, politicians, clinical psychologists and journalists.
This book also offers a gripping appreciation, growing up on the Cape Flats, by Professor Jonathan Jansen; and an insightful foreword by the renowned actor and playwright, Christo Davids, and afterword by the director of Molo Songololo, Patric Solomns.
Brutally dragged 780 metres beneath a taxi – a young woman’s inspiring story of survival, courage, and the will to live.
13 September 2011. The story would shock thousands and be remembered by many for years to come. It would be plastered all over the papers and continue to attract interest well after the shock factor of what happened had passed. Reports and articles would be written, and “facts”, as given to reporters by some of those involved and willing to be interviewed, would be recounted and repeated in all forms of public media over the months and even years that followed. And although these versions would generate widespread outrage, none was entirely accurate.
"The stories were about me. I was there. I am Kim McCusker - the girl who was dragged by a taxi. This, as I experienced it, is the true version of events."
The remarkable story of how Anthony Ray Hinton spent 30 years on death row, for crimes he did not commit.
The Sun Does Shine is a powerful and compelling true story that brings to life deep, human questions about suffering and redemption.
Anthony Ray Hinton was poor and black when he was convicted of two murders he hadn't committed. For the next three decades he was trapped in solitary confinement in a tiny cell on death row, having to watch as - one by one - his fellow prisoners were taken past him to the execution room. Eventually his case was taken up by the award-winning lawyer, Bryan Stevenson, who managed to have him exonerated, though it took 15 years for this to happen.
How did Hinton cope with the mental and emotional torture of his situation? The Sun Does Shine throws light not only on his remarkable personality but also on social deprivation and miscarriages of justice.
Just who is Radovan Krejcir? Known as “Baas John” to his underlings, he arrived in South Africa in 2007 under a false passport. He was a fugitive, a powerful Czech multimillionaire, who escaped from prison on fraud charges and fled to the good life in the Seychelles. But a bid by the Czech Republic to have him extradited saw Krejcir coming to South Africa. He was arrested at the airport, but an alleged bribe kept him in the country. Within a few years Krejcir had amassed great wealth and his name began being associated with underworld gang members such as Cyril Beeka and Lolly Jackson. It was the murder of Lolly Jackson that brought Krejcir’s name into the limelight and revealed his dealing with crime intelligence boss Joey Mabasa and small time criminal George Louka.
Over the next three years 10 more deaths took place, each one more dramatic than the next. He was also the victim of a bizarre James Bond style shoot out. His business Moneypoint exploded when a bomb left inside a bag blew up, killing two associates. Soon afterward Krejcir was arrested, but in true Krejcir fashion even a jail cell could not hold him down. Police foiled a plan to murder top cop Colonel Nkosana Ximba and forensic investigator Paul O’Sullivan and to stop numerous escape attempts.
He has been found guilty and sentenced for kidnapping, attempted murder and attempted drug possession. He also faces charges for the murder of Sam Issa, the conspiracy to murder investigators and the murder of Phumlani Ncube, a hit man-turned informant. But Krejcir reveals why we have not heard the last of the worst crime boss South Africa has ever seen.
The story of a ‘rogue unit’ operating within the South African Revenue Service (SARS) became entrenched in the public mind following a succession of sensational reports published by the Sunday Times in 2014. The unit, the reports claimed, had carried out a series of illegal spook operations: they had spied on President Jacob Zuma, run a brothel, illegally bought spyware and entered into unlawful tax settlements.
In a plot of Machiavellian proportions, head of the elite crime-busting unit Johann van Loggerenberg and many of SARS’s top management were forced to resign. Van Loggerenberg’s select team of investigators, with their impeccable track record of busting high-level financial fraudsters and nailing tax criminals, lost not only their careers but also their reputations. Now, in this extraordinary account, they finally get to put the record straight and the rumours to rest: there was no ‘rogue unit’. The public had been deceived, seemingly by powers conspiring to capture SARS for their own ends.
Shooting down the allegations he has faced one by one, Van Loggerenberg tells the story of what really happened inside SARS, revealing details of some of the unit’s actual investigations.
When Johan Booysen hears that the new Provincial Police Chief takes backhanders from a Durban businessman, he decides to give her the benefit of the doubt. But the evidence becomes impossible to ignore and he soon gets dragged down the corridors of power and politics into a web of intrigue, deceit and betrayal that, at times, he has trouble making sense of.
Only when he is arrested, handcuffed and tossed into a cell does Booysen realise just how ruthless those opposed to him are – an opposition he comes to call the ‘cabal’ – and whom he believes have more blood on their hands than the so-called Cato Manor Death Squad with which he is closely associated.
Blood On Their Hands traces Johan Booysen’s life and career – from patrolling the streets of Amanzimtoti in the 1970s to his rise in 2010 to major general and head of KZN’s Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation unit, the Hawks. But his tenure is short-lived. When Booysen decides to take on those so determined to be rid of him, each legal battle he wins is met by hostility and further efforts to shut him out of the of the criminal justice system. But capitulating is not in his DNA…
In a society afflicted by serious crime, South African citizens look to the SA Police Service for protection. Under the Constitution, police officials are responsible for upholding the law. The purpose of this book is to give them the knowledge and understanding that will equip them to do so.
In order to investigate crime effectively and gather evidence that will enable the prosecuting authorities secure convictions after due process of law, police officials have to be familiar with the fundamental elements of criminal law, criminal procedure and the law of evidence. These principles are set out in Applied Law for Police Officials. There is a clear focus on the implications of these laws for police procedures. Applied Law for Police Officials highlights the importance of effective co-operation between an investigating officer and the victim of crime, other witnesses and the prosecutor, which will greatly improve the chances of a successful criminal prosecution.
To exercise their powers lawfully, police officials must also be aware of the social context in which their duties are performed and of the constitutional principles of human rights, which receive attention throughout this book. With its unique practical approach, addressing legal principles specifically relevant to police officials, Applied Law for Police Officials will help them to provide an effective service to the community.
When Bridget Hilton-Barber got on a train to Grahamstown in 1982 to study journalism at Rhodes University, she had no idea of the brutal drama that would unfold.
A rebellious young woman, she became politically involved in anti-apartheid organisations and was caught up in the massive resistance and repression sweeping the Eastern Cape at the time. She ended up spending three months in detention without trial, and after her release discovered she had been betrayed by one of her best friends, Olivia Forsyth, who was a spy for the South African security police.
Thirty years later, a horrific flashback triggers Bridget’s journey back to the Eastern Cape to see if she can forgive her betrayer and finally let go of the extraordinary violence she encountered in the final days of apartheid. This is her powerful story.
Once an enemy of the apartheid police, Andrew Brown has worked as a police reservist for almost twenty years. In this book he takes the reader on patrol with him – into the ganglands of the Cape Flats, the townships of Masiphumelele and Nyanga, and the high-walled Southern Suburbs.
Good Cop, Bad Cop is a personal account of the perilous and often conflicting work of a SAPS officer. Brown describes being shot at, arresting suspects in a drug bust, chasing down leads in a homicide investigation and keeping the peace during the UCT student protests. Brown illustrates how difficult the job of the police is, and how easy it is to react with undue force. Yet he argues passionately that the role of the police is to be a service to communities and not a force to suppress social discontent.
Gripping and thought-provoking, this is a fascinating insight into the social fabric of current South Africa.
In 1992, former Grand Slam tennis champion Bob Hewitt was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame. In 2012, he was indefinitely suspended following multiple allegations of sexual misconduct from women he coached as young girls.
On 23 March 2015, Hewitt was found guilty of two counts of rape and one of sexual assault after a watershed trial that has changed the legal landscape and how the South African judicial system prosecutes historic rape.
This book takes the reader behind the scenes of the trial that shook the foundations of the international sporting world. It follows the case against Hewitt instituted by Suellen Sheehan and two fellow accusers, only a few of the dozens of survivors who allegedly suffered abuse at his hands. The result was a six-year prison sentence handed down to the frail 75-year-old, more than 30 years after his crimes.
Justice Served? The Trial and Conviction of Bob Hewitt covers various perspectives of the trial, from that of the state prosecutor to the defence advocate and other key role-players, includes Hewitt’s appeal of sentence in 2016, and chronicles the spectacular fall from grace of a world-famous tennis legend.
There are no villains here. Award-winning journalist Paul McNally finds corrupt cops, drug dealers, vigilante residents, addicts, torturers, murderers and cops partnered with drug dealers. But no villains.
Raymond is a shop owner on Ontdekkers Road, in Johannesburg, who takes a baseball bat to the dealers when they break his rules. He systematically records in his notebook the police officers who come – all day, every day – to collect their bribe money from the dealers, and is looking for someone to trust. Khaba is a middle-aged police officer who wants a quiet life but whose demons will not leave him in peace. He is trying to regain his trust in what he once regarded as an honourable profession. Wendy is a petite, ageing police reservist who can handle an R5 rifle with confidence, but not the sadness that accompanies her in her daily life – the loss of her police officer husband, brutally murdered by a drug lord, and the addiction that has her adult son in its grip. She is looking for respect and affirmation and for her own life to have meaning.
Through different paths, the lives of Raymond, Khaba and Wendy intersect on the street as their attention is focused on the current power couple – a drug dealer named Obi and Lerato, a police officer. Seemingly untouchable, Obi and Lerato terrorise Ontdekkers, and in the process upset the balance of this already lawless world.
A 'Making A Murderer' set in South Africa - a gripping true-crime story of murder and the justice system in the shadow of apartheid.
In 1993, in the final, fiery days of apartheid, a 26-year-old white American activist called Amy Biehl was murdered by a group of young black men in a township near Cape Town. Four men were tried and convicted of the murder and sentenced to eighteen years in prison. A few years later they had been freed. Two of the men were subsequently employed by Amy's parents to work at a charity set up in her memory. The men grew close to the Biehls. They called them 'Grandmother' and 'Grandfather'. Justine van der Leun, an American writer living in South Africa, set out to tell this twenty-year story, but as she delved into the case, the prevailing narrative started to unravel. Why didn't the eyewitness reports agree on who killed Amy Biehl? Were the men convicted of the crime actually responsible? And could it be that another violent crime committed on the same day, in the very same area, was connected to the murder of Amy Biehl?
We Are Not Such Things is the result of Justine van der Leun's four years investigating this strange, knotted tale of injustice, hatred, forgiveness and reconciliation. It is a gripping journey through the bizarre twists and turns of this case and its aftermath - and a lucid, eye-opening account of life today in a society still fractured and haunted by apartheid.
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