Durban firearm raid: Case withdrawn against former 'terror-linked' accused

Investigations expected to continue

05 July 2021 - 17:17 By orrin singh
Two rifles and more than 5,000 rounds of ammunition were some of the items discovered during a raid at a business premises in Mayville last month.
Two rifles and more than 5,000 rounds of ammunition were some of the items discovered during a raid at a business premises in Mayville last month.
Image: SAPS

The matter against five men accused of unlawful possession of firearms and ammunition as well as possession of suspected stolen property was withdrawn in the Durban magistrate's court on Monday. 

Among the five accused was Farhad Hoomer, once accused of having links to terror group Islamic State

Hoomer, Mohamed Akbar, Nufael Akbar, Tariq Hamid, and Ikkram Khan were arrested on June 25 after a raid at a business premises in Mayville. 

Police spokesperson Col Thembeka Mbele said a search warrant was obtained for the Mayville residence after police followed up on information about a house that was broken into in Scottburgh, on the KZN south coast. 

Mbele said various items that were stolen from the home were found at the Mayville residence. 

“A search warrant was obtained and the team proceeded to the Mayville residence as information indicated that the stolen items were on the premises. A search warrant was executed and more than 5,000 rounds of ammunition, a Norinco AK-47 rifle, seven cellphones, two magazines, another rifle as well as diamonds and jewellery were seized.”

The accused, aged between 23 and 47, were placed under arrest and made their first court appearance on June 28. 

Natasha Kara, director of public prosecutions (DPP) KZN spokesperson, said the state concluded there was insufficient evidence to keep the matter on the court roll.

Investigations are expected to continue. 

In October 2018, Hoomer and 11 other men were arrested during a raid co-ordinated by the Hawks after a series firebomb terrorist activities at Woolworths stores and at the Durban July horse racing event that year. 

The men also faced various other charges‚ including murder‚ attempted murder‚ arson and extortion. They were accused of being aligned to terror group Islamic State, with Hoomer allegedly orchestrating the Imam Hussain Mosque attack in May 2018 which resulted in the death of Verulam mechanic Abbas Essop.

After a year and nine months of numerous court appearances, the matter was stuck off the roll in the Verulam magistrate's court. 

Members of the prosecution team said at the time they had every intention to finalise investigations and approach the DPP to get the authority to prosecute and place the matter back on the roll. 

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