False arrest costs Hillbrow cop shop

THE rot at the Hillbrow Police Station could cost the police thousands of rands in legal fees and civil claims.

The Johannesburg high court on Thursday awarded Berea businessman Herbet Mandlbaur R150000 for false arrest related to continuous police harassment linked to Hillbrow station's acting commissioner Koos van Rhyn.

Last week Deputy Police Minister Fikile Mbalula and provincial police confirmed that Van Rhyn was being investigated for alleged links to the criminal underworld.

This after he was fingered as the person who organised the farewell party of retired Gauteng police commissioner Perumal Naidoo at the house of alleged Mafia boss Alan Kukard 10 days ago.

According to the Saturday Star Van Rhyn organised the party.

On October 13 last year Mandlbaur was detained for four hours for "criminal damage and trespassing" on his own property. Mandlbaur, who owns Sober Lodge, German Hotel, Dun Robin Residential Lodge and Jabula Ebusuku in Berea, said he had been harassed personally by Van Rhyn since last year.

"I was arrested when I refused to meet Van Rhyn at Crestview flats where he accused me of trespassing and damaging property. I went to the police station and was detained on charges relating to my own property," he said yesterday.

He currently has two pending civil claims for R150000 malicious damage to property and R200000 worth of "illegally" confiscated liquor.

"None of the cases of my liquor being confiscated for trading illegally have been to court because there is no case. But I have never had any of my stock returned," he said.

"There were about 95 arrests of bar staff and customers during last year. None of these arrests has led to evidence being put before Hillbrow magistrate's court.

"I have high court orders confirming that I have a legal liquor licence and the police should stop harassing me," he said yesterday.

Sowetan has case numbers, court orders, a deed of sale and photographs related to Mandlbaur's claims.

Now three well-placed sources have told Sowetan that Corporate Asset Management Security, owned by Kukard, is a subsidiary of NDA, a company owned by Van Rhyn.

Provincial police spokesperson, Brigadier Govindsamy Mariemutoo, was asked if there was no conflict of interest in the province investigating Van Rhyn.

"We have internal processes but if people are not satisfied they can go to the Independent Complaints Directorate," Mariemutoo said.

When contacted for comment Hillbrow police spokesperson Kriban Naidoo said: "I am off duty today and so is Van Rhyn. So I do not know how you can contact him."

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