Hundreds of people, some as old as 72, have appeared in courts in Gauteng to face charges related to the recent unrest and riots in the province.

National Prosecuting Authority regional spokesperson Phindi Mjonondwane said that 587 people had appeared in various courts across the West Rand on Monday to face charges related to the public violence, looting and the burning of infrastructure that began on Monday, 11 July in Soweto. 

Mjonondwane  said this brings the total number of suspects who are currently facing prosecution in relation to the riots to 682.  Their ages range from 18 to 72.

“They are facing charges ranging from public violence, theft, malicious injury to property, the contravention of the Disaster Management Act, housebreaking with intent to commit an offence and robbery,” Mjonondwane said.

Most of the suspects were remanded in custody until the hearing of their bail applications that will be heard between 19 July 2021 to 21 August 2021. 

Mjonondwane  said that the bail was fixed for the 20 of the suspects after careful consideration of the merits of each case. The bail amounts varied from R1000 to R5000 each, Mjonondwane said.

“The NPA continues to deal with the influx of dockets related to the past week’s unrests and is expecting numbers of people that face prosecution to increase as law enforcement is currently embarking on reclaiming the loot from alleged thieves,” Mjonondwane said.

Meanwhile police across Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal are following up leads and tip-offs from the community regarding the location of good stolen during the rampant riots. Police spent long hours on Monday confiscating the loot across the two provinces.

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Presh JM Reporter

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