'Sporo' drug case postponed as ex-player strikes out at photographer
In a bid to avoid pictures of himself being taken at the Randfontein magistrate’s court, former Kaizer Chiefs striker Mike “Sporo” Mangena grabbed one of his co-accused with both hands to prevent Sowetan photographing his appearance on Tuesday.
Mangena appeared in the Randfontein magistrate’s court on the West Rand on Tuesday morning and his case was postponed to the end of May. Dressed in a black suit and a T-shirt, Mangena carried a small knobkerrie covered with beads in his hand for the second time.
His case was postponed to allow for the Director of Public Prosecutions to respond to the representations of the defence. Mangena’s lawyers and those of his co-accused want the state to drop the case as they believe there is no evidence linking the accused with the crime of manufacturing illegal drugs.
As Mangena left the courtroom after a short appearance he realised that Sowetan was taking photographs. Mangena grabbed one of his co-accused with both hands and placed him in front of the lens to avoid his picture being taken. He then threw a swear word at the Sowetan photographer as he moved quickly to exit the courtroom.
His co-accused in the case are Morena Maqoaelane, 26, William Kazipata, 34, and Kennedy Tsogolane, 24. The three are still in custody while Mangena is out on R50,000 bail.
Mangena, 60, was arrested together with the three in November last year after police raided his farm in Hillside, Randfontein, where they found a drug-manufacturing plant.
The drugs-manufacturing barn was situated on the farm which also has chickens, goats, cattle and ducks. Inside the barn police said they found a spillage dryer tank, gas cylinders, plastic drums and a number of zinc basins full of chemicals which were allegedly used to produce mandrax.
Police said the drugs were produced on the farm but not packaged on the plot. The former Kaizer Chiefs, Wits, Durban Bush Bucks, Mamelodi Sundowns and Moroka Swallows striker has denied any involvement in the drug-manufacturing plant.
He said he had no knowledge of what was happening on the property.
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