The Trial of the Plant

By |Published On: August 18th, 2017|

Trial of the Plant  – Notes day by day.

After 7 years of hard work the trial eventually starts. What follows is a summary of proceedings with links to the live stream and times noted for quick access to information. We hope the summary will give our supporters an idea of why we only completed one witness’ testimony and ended before the allocated 19 days.

Day 1 – Monday 31 July

The day started with Adv Bokaba for the state and Adv Willis for DFL objecting to the Judge Ranchod’s order allowing FGA to live stream the trial via our website. We were therefore unable to switch on the live stream. Please see the written record for details of proceedings on this first (short) day in court.

Dr Abrams sits in court all day.

Adjourns 11.40

Day 2 – Tuesday 01 August

Judge Ranchod gives his reasons for allowing the live stream as per 28 July (pdf) State Advocate persists and puts in leave to appeal the judge’s decision. The judge dismisses the appeal with costs. (These costs will only be determined at the end of the trial)

Dr Abrams sits in court all day.

Day 3 – Wednesday 02 August

Both parties gather in chambers. State is appealing to the SCA but they agree to allow the live stream on traditional media channels, just not FGA website.

Live Stream is allowed and the cameras start rolling. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9R2ySMkuTt8&list=PLyEKHM08IxVi8_WDA1X-uedFc9IRQDMtb&index=15

Notice of Motion & answering affidavit PM. Use email from PM 2207

Strike out application (argued by state, Adv Quabashe) received 1st day of trial (state) & 2nd day of Trial (DFL). They wanted to strike out all the annexures to our experts summaries. Reasons: Summaries not clear, Medical Innovation Bill already in parliament, WCHC ruling, experts did not write the papers themselves, etc. Adv Mahon deals with each of these.

Mahon makes it clear that the defendants have had since 30 September 2016 to bring such an objection. We have had case management for this very purpose. We had made arrangements for a joint minute and nothing was done. Goes through pre trial bundles. No recognition of true issues.

Starting earlier tomorrow – judge is very aware of the time marching on. Start at 9.30 tomorrow.

Dr Abrams sits in court all day.

Day 4 – Thursday 03 August

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9YbIZlzn0oY&index=14&list=PLyEKHM08IxVi8_WDA1X-uedFc9IRQDMtb

Adv Quabashe replies for 2 hours, then Adv Willis for an hour. Judge adjourns to consolidate his decision.

Judge dismisses both the applications (State & DFL)  and costs are reserved for argument and determination at the end of the trial. Reasons for the decision will be furnished in the main judgement.

Opening arguments by Adv Don Mahon start 2:50:00

State’s Opening Starts 4:32:30

DFL align themselves with the State’s Opening 4:58:44

Prof Nutt is sworn in and Adv Mahon Starts leading evidence in chief with our first witness. It is Thursday afternoon and the trial of the Plant was meant to start on Monday.

Dr Abrams leaves for a visit to Cape Town. We know by now that we have lost him as a witness and that the trial will not get anywhere near finishing in the 19 court days allocated.

Day 5 – Friday 04 August

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RHoEe8P5SvY&index=13&list=PLyEKHM08IxVi8_WDA1X-uedFc9IRQDMtb

Starts 1:19:27

Prof Nutt evidence led by Adv Mahon until lunch time adjournment – court always finished early on a Friday.

Day 6 – Monday 07 August

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xfyoSgBMB8M&index=11&list=PLyEKHM08IxVi8_WDA1X-uedFc9IRQDMtb

Prof Nutt evidence in chief led by Don Mahon all day.

 

Day 7 – Tuesday 08 August

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R_gbu845Qm0&index=10&list=PLyEKHM08IxVi8_WDA1X-uedFc9IRQDMtb

Prof Nutt evidence led by Don Mahon concludes 14:37

State cross examination of Prof Nutt starts and continues rest of day. At the end of the day it becomes apparent that DFL have handed in a large bunch of new evidence. Prof Nutt remains in cross examination and that means he may not discuss the case with either the plaintiffs or our legal team.

Day 8 – Thursday 10 August.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a8eMGZlCuxo&list=PLyEKHM08IxVi8_WDA1X-uedFc9IRQDMtb&index=8

State Adv Bokaba continues cross examination of Prof Nutt until 1:29:26

DFL Adv Reg Willis starts cross examination of Prof Nutt until the end of the day.

Day 9 – Friday 11 August

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v8tey9Ik5mA&index=7&list=PLyEKHM08IxVi8_WDA1X-uedFc9IRQDMtb

DFL Adv Willis continues Prof Nutt cross examination until the end of the day. Prof Nutt stands down until he is back from safari next Wednesday. Adv Mahon tells the court that we will bring another witness on Monday. Court adjourns at lunch time.

Day 10 – Monday 14 August

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gE-A1n8EnO0&index=6&list=PLyEKHM08IxVi8_WDA1X-uedFc9IRQDMtb

Craig Paterson is sworn in and Adv Mahon leads his evidence until 5:07:07

State cross examination until 5:48:20

DFL Adv Qofa cross examination of Craig Paterson until the end of the day.

It has also become apparent that DFL have handed in another load of evidence so the court is adjourning so that this can be prepared for Prof Nutt on Wednesday. Craig is stuck in Pretoria until Friday, when Prof Nutt leaves and he can resume on the stand. Another day lost. Our criminology expert, Dr Simon Howell has also arrived from Cape Town in the hope that he can give evidence but will have to return to Cape Town,

 

Day 11 – Wednesday 16 August

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RBqAlFY2RP4&list=PLyEKHM08IxVi8_WDA1X-uedFc9IRQDMtb&index=5

Adv Mahon points out that we have received 9 bundles of evidence since the start of the trial. He makes the time constraints clear.

DFL cross examination of Prof Nutt rest of the day.

Day 12 – Thursday 17 August

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Q9D_Xm2HAw&list=PLyEKHM08IxVi8_WDA1X-uedFc9IRQDMtb&index=3

DFL continues Prof Nutt cross examination until 5:05:47

Adv Mahon starts re-examination until the end of the day. Points out to the judge that it is now obvious that the trial will have a second session and that he will continue with the re-examination in due course. DFL jumps up to say that there is now an expansion of the evidence in re-examination so they will have to apply to the judge for another session of cross-examination so it is for this reason that they don’t object. State does not object.

Prof Nutt steps down after 42 hours on the stand.

Day 13 – Friday 18 August

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dD-mmbTyS18&list=PLyEKHM08IxVi8_WDA1X-uedFc9IRQDMtb&index=1

DFL continues cross examination of Craig Paterson until 1:09:21

Adv Mahon re-examination of Craig until 1:12:16

Don announces to the court that the plaintiffs require time to read all the extra evidence that has been presented to us. Postponed sine die  (at a date to be confirmed).  He requests that costs be reserved.

State points to DFL to agree for both defendants. DFL: There are differing contentions between the parties. DFL contend that we are having problems with our witnesses & we contend that we need extra time to consider all the extra evidence handed down by DFL. This will be argued when costs are argued at the end of the trial.

End of proceedings, 13h00, until further notice.

Thank you to our FGA Affiliates who help to make our ongoing content creation possible!
SUPPORT THOSE WHO SUPPORT LEGALISATION

Thank you to our FGA Affiliates who help to make our ongoing content creation possible!
SUPPORT THOSE WHO SUPPORT LEGALISATION

Loading...
Loading...

About the Author: Myrtle Clarke

Share This Post

Leave A Comment