William Mbatha in new bail bid

UNSUCCESSFUL: William Mbatha at the Germiston regional court where he failed to get bail. Pic. Mohau Mofokeng. 09/12/2009. © Sowetan.
UNSUCCESSFUL: William Mbatha at the Germiston regional court where he failed to get bail. Pic. Mohau Mofokeng. 09/12/2009. © Sowetan.

William "Mashobane" Mbatha, 36, will this week turn to the Johannesburg high court in a final bid to be freed on bail before Christmas.

William "Mashobane" Mbatha, 36, will this week turn to the Johannesburg high court in a final bid to be freed on bail before Christmas.

This after the Germiston regional court on Friday concurred with the prosecution that he had previously violated bail conditions and denied him bail.

Known as "King of Bling", the Atteridgeville, Pretoria, socialite has been in jail for almost four months after being arrested in connection with a string of house robberies, kidnaping and impersonating a police officer.

Speaking to Sowetan yesterday his instructing attorney, Brownwyn Forbey, dismissed as unfounded speculation that Mbatha could no longer afford legal fees.

On the contrary, Forbey said, they have already applied to get transcripts from the lower court in a bid to have its Friday ruling overturned by a higher court.

"We are approaching the high court on an urgent basis. If we get the transcripts in time there should be some movement this week. We want to have this finalised before people go on holiday. We had anticipated whatever happened in the regional court and had been prepared to go the high court route," she said.

But Forbey declined to comment on speculation that Mbatha was selling off some of his assets after alleged financial difficulties.

But one of Mbatha's close associates said: "There is no semblance of truth to those rumours. The guy is fine."

Mbatha's advocate, Jack Gerber, said there was "a good chance" that the high court might grant them bail.

"I do not think the decision to deny bail was correct," he said.

Mbatha was branded a repeat offender who can't desist from criminal activities during a four-month-long bail hearing.

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