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Angelo Agrizzi remains gravely ill in hospital as lawyer seeks release on bail

Ernest Mabuza Journalist
Former Bosasa COO Angelo Agrizzi remains under guard in an ICU ward in a private hospital. File image.
Former Bosasa COO Angelo Agrizzi remains under guard in an ICU ward in a private hospital. File image.
Image: Antonio Muchave

Doctors cannot freely treat former Bosasa COO Angelo Agrizzi because of the onerous security arrangements in force inside his private hospital ward.

This is according to his advocate, Mannie Witz, who on Monday told the high court in Johannesburg about Agrizzi's condition when he appealed against a decision by the Johannesburg Specialised Commercial Crimes Court on October 14 denying him bail. Agrizzi, who is facing a charge of corruption, has been in hospital since October 15.

Although unconscious, Agrizzi is tied to the bed by his leg, and three armed warders are standing guard inside the ICU ward, his lawyer said on Monday.

Three other guards are standing guard outside the ward and another three are stationed in the car park.

Witz presented the court with a report from a specialist at the private hospital stating that Agrizzi remained gravely ill in the hospital's ICU, where he remained ventilated and on dialysis.

The report states Agrizzi is battling a number of health problems, including hypertension and diabetes.

Witz said Agrizzi's legal team did not have a problem with the guards stationed outside the ward and in the car park, but had a problem with the three inside the private ward.

“Doctors cannot freely treat him. This is not conducive to treating him in the condition he is in,” Witz said.

He said the magistrate erred by not giving more weight to Agrizzi's medical condition when denying him bail.

Witz said another reason Agrizzi should be released on bail is because of the weakness of the state's corruption case against him.

Witz said facts showed the two payments that were made to Agrizzi's co-accused, former ANC MP Vincent Smith, came from Bosasa and not from Agrizzi.

He said with the untimely death of Gavin Watson, former CEO of Bosasa, the state could not charge the late Watson or Bosasa, which has since been liquidated.

Witz said the magistrate also erred in not taking into account that Agrizzi had no previous conviction.

The bail appeal continues before judge Ratha Mokgoatlheng.


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