'I only smelt his boozey breath'

FLASHBACK: Drunk driving accused Judge Nkola Motata in the car that hit a wall in Hurlingham. © Sowetan.
FLASHBACK: Drunk driving accused Judge Nkola Motata in the car that hit a wall in Hurlingham. © Sowetan.

Mfundekelwa Mkhulisi

Mfundekelwa Mkhulisi

Pretoria high court judge Nkola Motata fell after being pulled out of his crashed car, Metro police officer Moatlhodi Madibo testified in the Johannesburg magistrate's court.

"But I think he fell because he was handcuffed and lost his balance," Madibo testified yesterday. "I can't say whether he had consumed alcohol or not but I can say his breath smelt of alcohol." He said the judge's speech was slurred and that the cops had had problems getting him out of his car because he kept pulling the door closed every time they opened it.

Earlier Madibo's colleague, Paulina Mashilela, disputed some of the answers she had allegedly given during consultation with state prosecutor Zaais van Zyl.

"The answers given are not mine. In fact, they are answers we were arguing about during consultation," she said.

In the morning legal principles became a matter of discourse.

"Mr van Zyl has now become a witness in his own case, a case in which he is to be prosecutor," said defence counsel Danie Dorfling.

Van Zyl said: "If I am the source [of notes] I should leave this case in the blink of an eye and not practise law."

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