João Rendeiro back in South Africa court on January 27

  • Lusa
  • 21 January 2022

The former chairman of Banco Privado Português (BPP) will continue to be held in Westville prison, KwaZulu-Nata until the end of January.

The discussion of João Rendeiro’s extradition case has been scheduled for next Thursday, January 27, at the court in Verulam, Durban, magistrate Johan Van Rooyen announced on Friday.

In today’s session, the judge received the extradition documents sent by Portugal.

The former chairman of Banco Privado Português (BPP) will continue to be held in Westville prison, KwaZulu-Nata.

Prosecutor Naveen Sewparsat handed the court a cardboard box containing the extradition file sent by Portugal, containing two sets of documents, one in Portuguese, the other in English.

The red and green tape sealing the Portuguese set of documents was broken, while the translated documents were properly sealed.

Naveen Sewparsat said the prosecutor’s office would request that the extradition documents be sent through diplomatic channels to the Portuguese authorities so that they can check and reseal them.

Defence lawyer Kellie Hennessy said the defence could only access the documents this morning and needed more time to study them.

A spokeswoman for the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), Natasha Ramkisson, said as she left the court that the team of South African prosecutors was working closely with prosecutors in Portugal.

Also on her way out, Kellie Hennessy refused to answer questions about Rendeiro’s health and detention conditions.

The former banker entered the courtroom coughing and, when asked by journalists, said he was “a little better”, alluding to health problems while in custody.

He repeated the same statement on his way out, taken away by police officers.

Magistrate Johan Van Rooyen authorised journalists to be present and Portuguese television stations to broadcast the sessions that are to follow, but prohibited any disturbance during the proceedings, as he said had happened today when João Rendeiro was questioned. If it happened again, authorisation would be revoked, he stressed.