Former Bosasa COO Angelo Agrizzi speaks during an interview.
Elizabeth Sejake, Gallo Images, Rapport
- The Bosasa fraud matter was postponed yet again due to Angelo Agrizzi’s no-show in court.
- The State has now brought an application to determine why Agrizzi was not in court and whether he is able to stand trial.
- With the help of reports by medical experts, the court will soon determine whether Agrizzi can stand trial, given his medical condition.
The Gauteng High Court in Pretoria will have to decide whether self-professed corrupter Angelo Agrizzi can physically stand trial for his role in the R1.8 billion Bosasa fraud case.
Agrizzi was a no-show in court on Monday as his co-accused – former correctional services commissioner Linda Mti, former DCS chief financial officer Patrick Gillingham, and former Bosasa CFO Andries Van Tonder – appeared in the dock.
Agrizzi has failed to appear in court on several occasions due to his ailing health.
In October 2020, he was denied bail in a separate matter where he is accused of paying bribes to former ANC MP Vincent Smtih.
He spent an evening in prison before being rushed to a public hospital. From there, he was transferred to a private hospital as his condition worsened.
News24 reported at the time that Agrizzi had also suffered a heart attack while in prison and had to be placed on life support.
READ | Former ANC MP Vincent Smith to make representations to have charges against him withdrawn
Since the start of his health problems, he has not made a single appearance in court.
This has prompted the State to now bring an application for information on why Agrizzi cannot appear in court, and for the court to assess whether he can stand trial physically and neurologically.
If the court determines that Agrizzi is fit to stand trial, it will also have to determine whether he must attend court physically or attend virtually.
The application will be argued on 2 December, and the arguments will be based on medical reports.
News24 understands that both the State and defence have appointed medical experts to examine Agrizzi.
Agrizzi’s lawyer, Manny Witz, said his client was extremely sick and that his health had been deteriorating.
He explained that Agrizzi was on oxygen 24/7 and battled to do anything physical.
ALSO READ | On the Record | State capture and looted billions – is SA making any progress fighting corruption?
According to Witz, one medical report found that Agrizzi would probably only be able to testify for half an hour a day.
The criminal matter involves four tenders valued at more than R1.8 billion, which were awarded to Bosasa and its subsidiaries between August 2004 and 2007.
News24 previously reported that these tenders were for catering and training services, installing CCTV cameras, installing perimeter fencing, the supply of a television system, and monitoring equipment.
It is alleged that these tenders were won through corrupt means.