DOUBLE murder convict, Habofanoe Lephuthela Ntsie who claims he was abducted from South Africa in March is expected back in the High Court on December 29, to fight his extradition
Dec. 9, 2022
2 min read
Ntsie wants his extradition case heard urgently
Double murder convict, Habofanoe Lephuthela Ntsie
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The controversial cameraman was in 2012 convicted of the 2004 murder of Souru Masupha and Habaka Mahao at Khorong in Ha Tšosane, Maseru.
He has cited the Ministry of Foreign Affair and International Relations, the Officer Commanding Lesotho Correctional Services (LCS), the Commissioner of Police, the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), and the Attorney General as respondents in his application.
Ntsie’s lawyer, Advocate Raboloetse Makara told the court earlier in November when the case was postponed that he wanted his client to be deported to South Africa as the court could not exercise its jurisdiction.
He argued that Ntsie was illegally brought to Lesotho by SA authorities.
“Circumstances surrounding the applicant’s extradition were tantamount to abduction as proper procedures were not followed,” Makara said.
Justice ’Maseforo Mahase convicted Ntsie in absentia after he fled the country during lunch break on the day his judgment was being read.
He was eventually arrested in South Africa in March of this year and extradited back to Lesotho.
In his papers before the court, Ntsie argues that due procedures were not followed during his extraction from the neighboring country.
Makara wants proceedings to be stayed and the respondents to furnish the court with the extradition documents.
On behalf of the Crown, Adv Lehlanako Mofilikoane told the court that they have filed a notice of intention to oppose the matter.
She said the court does not have the jurisdiction to review the proceedings, which took place in South Africa as the extraction proceedings took place in that country.
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She said: “I advise the defence team to give the applicant a chance to be heard on why he says he was extradited unlawfully as we have documents which we can provide before the court to show it is not true that he was extradited unlawfully and prematurely.”
For her part, Justice Mahase said she did not get a chance to read the application as it was only served the same morning she had prepared to continue with mitigation before going into sentencing. She added that there is no urgency in the matter.
She said: “This court cannot review South Africa’s judgments; if we postpone this matter I will hear it in September 2023 as cases before me are set to that date.”
Makara asked for an adjournment in order to consult his client who, however, insisted he wanted his application to be heard as soon as possible.