Pubdate: Wed, 22 Dec 2004
Source: Cape Argus (South Africa)
Copyright: 2004 Cape Argus.
Author: Karyn Maughan
Bookmark: (Asset Forfeiture)


Corrupt police supplied alleged crime kingpin Quinton "Mr Big" Marinus with 
drugs and arranged for his syndicate to obtain gun and driver's licences, a 
top police officer told the Cape High Court.

Christiaan Rossouw, a member of the provincial High Flyer Task Team, made 
his revelations in an asset forfeiture unit application to seize property 
belonging to Marinus's alleged 14-member syndicate.

The group was arrested in October, after an 18-month investigation into 
allegations of racketeering. Appearing briefly at the High Court yesterday, 
Marinus indicated that he would oppose efforts by the prosecuting authority 
to seize his multimillion-rand estate.

Marinus, 35, was granted R100 000 bail on 47 charges - including four of 
murder - in the Bellville Magistrate's Court last month.

Rossouw charged in papers before court that "persons who are perceived to 
be threats to the syndicate are eliminated by killing them" and suggested 
that Marinus used hitmen to perform such "eliminations". He said Marinus 
"also uses violence to maintain discipline among the 'foot soldiers' of the 

Marinus and the other defendants, who include his wife Davidene and cousin 
Calvyn Marinus, face charges of armed robbery, drug-dealing, conspiracy to 
commit fraud, the illegal sale of alcohol, perlemoen smuggling-related 
offences and racketeering activities conducted over a 10-year period.

In papers before the court, Rossouw described the modus operandi of 
policemen, including one of Marinus's 15 co-accused, Andrew "Waltie" van 
der Walt, a former inspector in the unit fighting organised crime.

He was a key player in Marinus's drug-dealing operation, Rossouw said.

Marinus would order drugs from dealers, and then tip off the police who 
would intercept the dealer, confiscate the drugs and allow the dealer to go 

The policemen would sell the drugs on to Marinus for amounts far below 
street value. In one such incident, Rossouw alleged, Van der Walt helped to 
steal 10 000 Mandrax tablets.

The State alleges that drug-lord Colin Stanfield (now deceased) was one of 
the syndicate's main drug suppliers between 1995 and 1998 - and that the 
1999 armed robbery of R600 000 from a Telkom van financed the expansion of 
the Marinus organisation's illegal activities.

Others facing charges are alleged syndicate members Brian Daniels, Fareed 
Mohammed, Fabian Abrahams, Glestin Pietersen, Marinus's sister Desiree 
Blankenberg, Jeffery Blankenberg, Winston Blaauw, Johan Classen, Mario 
Voight, Vincent Koen, Emmalene Marinus (married to Calvin Marinus) and 
ex-policeman Andrew "Waltie" van der Walt.

Rossouw said that one of the State's five main witnesses against Marinus 
was a former policeman who had been involved with the syndicate since its 
inception 10 years ago - and who, with "another corrupt police officer", 
had also sold "confiscated" drugs to Marinus.

"Quinton would contact a dealer with an order for Mandrax to be delivered 
at a specific address. (The witness) would then waylay the deliverer, tell 
him that he was a policeman, 'confiscate' the drugs and let the deliverer 
go free.

"He would then hand the drugs to Quinton, who paid him for them at a rate 
lower than the going rate," Rossouw explained. Syndicate members would 
sometimes impersonate policemen in order to steal from drug dealers.

The witness had started working for Marinus while still in the police, but 
later became a full-time member of the syndicate, Rossouw said.

"He describes himself as the 'Minister of Papers' - as an ex-member of the 
police he was knowledgeable about procedures for obtaining learner and full 
driver's licences, gun licences and vehicle registration certificates.

"He also rented premises for the storage of drugs and abalone, and stored 
abalone at his house," Rossouw said.

The State's main witnesses were all formerly involved in its criminal 
activities, but had decided to "break ranks", Rossouw said. Their evidence 
would need to be corroborated because they were accomplices in the crimes 
they described in their evidence.

During Marinus's bail application, police witnesses differed on whether 
such independent corroboration could be obtained.
- ---
MAP posted-by: Jo-D