THE BAIL application for the two men accused of kidnapping an Angolan mining magnate's young son was abandoned in the Johannesburg magistrate's court yesterday.
This was after it was established that Francisco Jose and Fernando Jamba were illegal immigrants and so automatically did not qualify for bail.
Investigations into the status of the men from Angola found that Jose, who had a permit to be in the country until January 3 this year, failed to return to Angola when it expired. He had been in the country illegally since then.
Meanwhile, Jamba's South African identity document and a driver's licence he produced claiming to be a naturalised citizen were found to be fakes.
It was determined that he had been living in the country illegally since August 2008. The state argued that if granted bail, Jamba would not have a valid residential address as he was prohibited from buying or renting property since he was an illegal immigrant.
Jamba would face additional charges of possession of false identity documents.
The state said the two men should not be granted bail until their case was finalised. Their defence did not object to the state's findings about the men's status in the country and told the court that it was abandoning its bail application.
When the state requested a ruling with regard to bail application to prevent the men from launching another attempt, their defence objected and said because it was abandoning its initial bail efforts it did not mean it would not resume them.
Magistrate Mziwamadoda Mati said the ruling would not make any difference because the accused did not qualify for bail.
He told the defence the accused had the right to apply for bail at a later stage, provided they had new information and on condition that their application was made to the magistrate who initially heard their case. Mati postponed the case to August 10 for further investigation.
Jose and Jamba face a charge of kidnapping.
Their co-accused, Domingos Santiago, was due to appear in the specialised commercial crimes court on July 21. He was facing a separate charge under the Prevention of Organised Crime Act.
He was released on R5000 bail granted in the Magistrate's Court last month before his case was referred to the specialised court.
The three men allegedly kidnapped Faustino Amoes' 5-year-old son Samuel in Troyeville, Johannesburg in May and demanded a ransom of more than R1million. Amoes paid the ransom and some of it was allegedly found in Santiago's possession, which led to him to face a separate charge from his co-accused. - Sapa