A Cape Town businessman recorded in what was reported to be the solicitation of a bribe on behalf of underworld figure Nafiz Modack has “emphatically” denied that the man on the other end of the line was Western Cape top cop Jeremy Vearey.
Mohamedaly Hanware told News24 that the clip, reported to be a coded conversation between Vearey and himself over the return of confiscated guns, was a legitimate business discussion between him and a customer.
The Sunday Times reported that Vearey, the Western Cape SAPS head of detectives, had been accused by Modack of demanding R40 000 for confiscated firearms. Modack lodged a complaint with the police in April.
Modack in his affidavit said he and his bodyguards had driven to the scene where the bodyguard of alleged gang boss Colin Booysen was murdered in Belhar in September last year, according to the report.
There, he and his men had been arrested and briefly held at the Ravensmead police station. Upon their release, their confiscated guns had not been returned, the document reportedly reads.
Modack had according to the affidavit gone to Hanware to contact Vearey, who supposedly told him that Vearey wanted R40 000 to hand the guns back, the Sunday Times reported.
Vearey had reportedly said he had “done a lot” for Modack and that he should “put more meat on the table”.
Hanware on Tuesday denied that Vearey was the man on the other end of the line.
He said he never referred to the caller as V for Vearey, but as “G for Gavin”.
Hanware insisted that he was not a go-between, as alleged, and that he and Modack were business associates.
He said he intended lodging a complaint with the Press Ombudsman.
‘I buy and sell things’
Hanware also denied that the “roses” and “olive trees” he spoke of referred to guns, or that the “four packets of biltong” referred to a R40 000 bribe, saying it was “not code for anything”.
“I buy and sell things. I was speaking to someone who bought stock, a customer,” he claimed.
On Monday, Vearey also denied that his was the voice in the recording.
A favourite to take over as Western Cape police commissioner after the transfer of Khombinkosi Jula to KwaZulu-Natal, Vearey had lodged an official complaint with police commissioner Kehla Sitole after he failed to make the shortlist for the province’s top job.
According to his letter, this was supposedly because he had allegedly not included proof of his qualifications.
But the Sunday Times quoted a source close to the selection process as saying that Vearey had not made the shortlist as he did not meet the minimum requirements.