[These are the first results of the trials that I've come across. 2 have been sentenced. According to this, Knoesen's own trial continues in February. But there was a woman, an estate agent involved in this. Why no mention of her? Has she turned state witness? One of the big issues in all these types of endeavours, is how many people turn state witness. Jan]
‘Crusaders’ pair sentenced for terrorism
Two members of the “Crusaders” right-wing organisation, Eric Donald Abrahams (55) and Erroll Abrahams (50) were found guilty, convicted and sentenced on 8 December 2020, in the Middelburg Regional Court for contravention of Protection of Constitutional Democracy Against Terrorism and Related Matters Act (POCDATARA) when they prepared and planned to carry out terrorist attacks on government institutions and the African population in South Africa on 28 November 2019.
The two formed part of the Crusaders organisation that planned and conspired to overthrow the democratically elected Government of South Africa and replace it with a Government led by the organisation. This objective would be achieved by carrying out attacks on military and police installations as well as on informal settlements occupied by African persons.
On 28 and 29 November 2019, the Crimes Against the State Section of the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation arrested the accused, Eric Donald Abrahams and Erroll Abrahams in Kliprivier, Gauteng. They remained in custody until the finalisation of the case.
On 8 December 2020, they received the following sentences:
Count 1: Preparing and planning to carry out terrorist attacks – “Fifteen (15) years’ imprisonment, of which seven (7) years are suspended for five (5) years.
Count 2: Financing of specified offence (terrorism) – 5 years imprisonment.
Count 3: Unlawful possession of prohibited firearm – 5 years imprisonment
Count 4: Unlawful possession of a firearm- 5 years imprisonment.
Count 5: Unlawful possession of ammunition – 5 years imprisonment.
Count 6: Unlawful possession of more than 200 cartridges- 5 years imprisonment.
Effectively each accused will serve 8 years in prison. All other sentences will run concurrent with the sentence on count 1(preparing and planning to carry out terrorist attacks).
The Court has further ordered in terms of section 103 of the Firearms Control Act, that both accused are unfit to possess firearms, ammunition, competency certificates, licences, authorisation and permits.
The National Head of the DPCI, Lt Gen Godfrey Lebeya commended the team of investigators and prosecutors for the work that has been done so far
The case against the other accused, Harry Knoesen will continue on 1 February 2021 for High Court trial date after he pleaded not guilty.