Arrests in Kenya and Britain allegedly linked to Thulsie twins, court hears

Johannesburg – The arrest of two suspects in Kenya and Britain was allegedly linked to the case of terror accused twins Brandon-Lee and Tony-Lee Thulsie, the Johannesburg Magistrate’s Court heard on Tuesday.

Prosecutor Chris MacAdam said evidence in those cases allegedly linked to the twin’s case.

He said they had become aware of the arrests after the twins’ last court appearance.

The Thulsies made a brief appearance in court on Tuesday morning.

Their mother sobbed silently during the court proceedings, while being held by a family member.

MacAdam asked that the matter could be postponed for the State to finalise their investigation.

“The major issue is ensuring key evidence from different states. These are serious cases and we are under international obligation,” MacAdam said.

READ: Thulsie twins’ arrest was lawful, court rules

Jurisdiction issues

MacAdam said that the US also had jurisdiction over the case and that they had registered a local case and would subpoena service providers.

He said senior British officials had met with the investigating officer to see what information was available in SA.

The twins were arrested during raids in Newclare and Azaadville, on the West Rand, on July 9.

They face three counts of contravening the Protection of Constitutional Democracy Against Terrorist and Related Activities Act.

According to their charge sheet, the brothers, who were arrested along with siblings Ebrahim and Fatima Patel, were allegedly linked to the self-proclaimed Islamic State group.

They were allegedly planning to set off explosives at a US embassy and “Jewish institutions” in SA.

The investigating officer found that the twins had allegedly been active on social media prior to their arrests, allegedly discussing matters that could incriminate them.

‘Wishy-washy statement’

The State also approached the Syrian and Turkish governments, because there was information that the twins wanted to go to Syria, MacAdam said.

Their lawyer, Annelene van den Heever, argued that there had been an unreasonable delay in the case.

“These are nothing but speculation and the court cannot rely on a ‘wishy-washy’ statement. The court needs to rely on facts to grant a postponement,” van den Heever said.

Van den Heever said the State needed to tell the court how long it was going to take and what was needed.

“When these matters go across international borders, they are tied to protocols,” Magistrate Pieter du Plessis told Van den Heever.

The case was postponed to Friday.

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