Accused in KFC assault case absent due to another court appearance
His four co-accused returned to the Pretoria North Magistrate's Court for bail application proceedings.
Three of them‚ Stephen Nel‚ 39‚ DJ van Rooyen‚ 21‚ and Joshua Scholtz‚ 21‚ are applying for bail.
Ockert Muller‚ their 20-year-old co-accused‚ got bail during their first appearance three weeks ago. He sat in the dock with his co-accused.
The five men are facing charges of attempted murder and assault with intent to inflict grievous bodily harm. They allegedly beat up Jacob Sono and his wife Dudu at a KFC in Montana‚ north of the capital‚ three weeks ago. The state is opposing the bail applications.
Harding previously indicated to court he was abandoning his bail application until September 14. Rianie Strydom‚ Harding's lawyer‚ told Magistrate Motlhoki Rapulana her client was absent from court on Wednesday because he was appearing in another court in KwaZulu-Natal.
Harding is appearing at a court in Port Shepstone for a civil matter and not one of criminality‚ according to his mother who jumped up dramatically in the gallery.
Prosecutor Ronnie Sibanda pointed out to court that Harding also had a warrant of arrest in the Free State. He allegedly assaulted petrol pump attendants and called them the K-word‚ according to reports. Harding allegedly fled to Pretoria following that assault.
The court gallery is filled to capacity with relatives and supporters of the accused as well members of Black First Land First.