Police defend Selebi

Police have defended national police commissioner Jackie Selebi's undertaking that crime would not mar the past weekend's World Cup qualifying draw in Durban.

Police have defended national police commissioner Jackie Selebi's undertaking that crime would not mar the past weekend's World Cup qualifying draw in Durban.

"The commissioner was 100percent correct in what he was talking about," said national police spokesman Senior Superintendent Vish Naidoo yesterday.

Former Austrian soccer player Pieter Burgstaller was murdered on a golf course near Durban on Friday.

On Sunday, the briefcase of German team manager Oliver Bierhoff was stolen from his breakfast table at his hotel. It contained his passport and two mobile phones as well as paperwork relating to the draw.

Naidoo said Burgstaller's murder could not be linked to the draw event and was a separate issue.

"I'm not even talking about that [the murder of Burgstaller] because it happened more than 130 kilometres from the zone we were securing," he said.

Burgstaller was found dead with a single bullet wound to the chest at the Selborne Hotel Spa and Golf Estate in Pennington.

On the theft of Bierhoff's briefcase, Naidoo said: "We don't police inside hotels which is where the bags were stolen."

Naidoo said the draw, the soccer match between Pirates and Chiefs and the cricket match between South Africa and New Zealand all happened without any serious incidents. - Sapa

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