Delay in Durban 'soccer hooligans' trial

A file image of members of the South African police service at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban where angry Kaizer Chiefs fans stormed the pitch and attacked Premier Soccer League security personnel on Saturday April 21 2018.
A file image of members of the South African police service at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban where angry Kaizer Chiefs fans stormed the pitch and attacked Premier Soccer League security personnel on Saturday April 21 2018.
Image: Anesh Debiky/Gallo Images

The trial of eleven alleged soccer hooligans has been delayed again‚ after the group made a brief appearance in the Durban Regional court on Thursday.

The matter‚ previously heard in June‚ had been adjourned to allow for pre-trial proceedings - the first step ahead of setting the matter down.

But on Thursday the prosecution of the eleven was set back by another month.

The group face charges of public violence and pitch invasion after allegedly causing havoc at a soccer match between Kaizer Chiefs and Free State Stars at the Moses Mabhida stadium in April.

Dennis Nyembe‚ Phelelani Jojisa‚ Sihle Zungu‚ Zibongile Njova‚ Nolwethu Sokotha‚ Lungisani Jaca‚ Douglas Mkhize‚ Cebolendoda Hadebe‚ Khwezilomo Madiba‚ John Khumalo and Siphosenkosi Memela are all out on bail.

Madiba is understood to have been caught on camera kicking a security guard in the face‚ while Memela and Khumalo are alleged to have tampered with camera equipment.

All have been barred from attending any sporting fixture or recreational gathering until the finalisation of the court case.

On April 21‚ police and stadium security were overrun as fans invaded the pitch at the end of the game‚ heading directly for embattled Chiefs coach Steve Komphela‚ who quit immediately after the game.

The pandemonium left many people injured and property damaged. The damage to the stadium and technical equipment belonging to broadcasters is said to have amounted to millions‚ with some equipment pilfered. Two vehicles parked at the back of the stadium were also damaged.

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