- Sam 'Mshengu' Chabalala was released on R500 000 bail on Wednesday afternoon
- The businessman was whisked off in a convoy of four BMWs in an apparent bid to hide from the media
- One of Chabalala's associates knocked over a traffic officer while attempting to whisk him away
Controversial businessman Sam 'Mshengu' Chabalala is a free man after being arrested a second time.
The flamboyant Mpumalanga personality was released on R500 000 bail after being nabbed for attempting to allegedly bribe a senior police official in exchange for previous charges to be dropped and an impounded vehicle to be released.
While it was surely a happy day for Chabalala, one unnamed traffic officer was knocked over by the businessman's convoy.
SowetanLIVE reports that one of the four BMWs sent to collect Chabalala had reversed into the cop at a high speed, before driving off in an attempt to hide him from members of the press.
A security official recounted that Chabalala had left court by four BMWs and an escort of traffic officials:
"They didn't want him to be seen by the media or have his pictures taken. So they used the exit at the back."
Briefly.co.za reported that Chabalala's real name was revealed to be Gilbert Tachuona, born in Zimbabwe.
Prosecutor Eric Sihlangu had opposed bail, saying that the state had evidence Chabalala's South African identity was questionable:
"The department of home affairs has indicated that the applicant obtained a South African ID through misrepresentation."
Chabalala's lawyer had asked the court to consider an amount of R5 000 for bail, but Magistrate Hlengiwe Mkhabela had refuted both notions of an illicit identity and the lower amount:
"The state cannot prove that the applicant is a foreign national. There is no reason to keep him in custody. The state's submission that he is a flight risk can't be proven. The applicant has strong business and family ties in South Africa. He has also been attending court proceedings and abiding to bail conditions in his other matter. The applicant is aware of how strong a case the state has against him The bail amount proposed by the defence is an insult to the court. Bail has been set at R500,000."
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