South Africa’s former chief Jacob Zuma pleaded not responsible on Wednesday to corruption, fraud, racketeering and cash laundering expenses referring to a $2 billion arms deal when he was deputy president.
Zuma, who was president between 2009-2018, faces 18 expenses referring to the 1999 deal. He has rejected the costs and says he’s the sufferer of a politically motivated witch hunt by a rival faction of the ruling African Nationwide Congress.
Zuma, who additionally faces a separate inquiry into corruption throughout his time as president, is accused of accepting 500,000 rand ($34,000) yearly from French arms firm Thales, in trade for safeguarding the corporate from an investigation into the deal.
“I plead not responsible,” he stated, staring into area, after the prosecutor learn out all the costs.
Zuma’s defence workforce is asking for the recusal of state prosecutor Billy Downer, on the grounds that he has “no title to prosecute”. The prosecution requested extra time to make a response to that decision, so it won’t be handled on Wednesday however quite on July 19, stated the presiding choose.
Thales was often known as Thomson-CSF on the time of the deal. It has stated it had no data of any transgressions by any of its workers in relation to the award of the contracts. Its consultant in court docket additionally pleaded not responsible to the racketeering, corruption and cash laundering expenses the corporate confronted.
The Nationwide Prosecuting Authority filed the costs in opposition to Zuma greater than a decade in the past, set them apart simply earlier than he efficiently ran for president in 2009, then reinstated them a month after he resigned in early 2018.
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