‘Sporo’ takes police minister to the cleaners for wrongful arrest

Ex-soccer star wants R8.7m from the state

Former Kaizer Chiefs striker Mike “Sporo” Mangena has  filed a whopping R8.7-million lawsuit against Minister of Police Bheki Cele and the National Prosecution Authority (NPA) for wrongful arrest and malicious prosecution.

Mangena, a former SABC1 soccer analyst, was arrested with three men – Morena Maqoaelane, William Kazipata and Kennedy Tsogolane – after a mandrax-manufacturing barn was found on his farm in Hillside, Randfontein, in 2018.

In court papers  filed in the Joburg High Court last week by his lawyers, Frans Mashele Attorneys, Mangena claims that his reputation was damaged as a result of the arrest.

The lawyers said Mangena was wrongfully arrested without justifiable cause and prosecuted by the NPA, which even opposed bail in his first appearance and then applied for the case to be postponed.

As a result, he was remanded in custody without reasonable and justifiable cause to do so. But the case was later struck o the roll due to insufficient evidence. Consequently, Mangena is demanding R8.7-million.

He said R1-million was for the unlawful and wrongful arrest, R1-million for malicious prosecution, R500 000 for legal fees, R300 000 for defamation of character, R210 000 for structural damage to property, R500 000 for loss of livestock and R2.5-million for pain and suffering, among others.

His lawyers said Mangena was arrested and prosecuted even though he showed the police a lease agreement that, although he owned the property, he had leased it out. In the summons, the lawyers said a¦er showing them the lease agreement, Mangena drove back to his farm, which was being searched by police.

He was told he would be driven to the Randfontein police station to sign a warning statement, but was not told what the warning was for.

He was thrown into a cell with others without a warrant of arrest and charged with conspiring to manufacture drugs.

“The arrest and prosecution of the plaintiff was highly publicised, which resulted in the defamation of his character,” reads the summons. NPA south Gauteng spokesperson Phindi Mjonondwane said it had enrolled the matter because there was prima facie evidence against Mangena and co-accused.

“We maintain that position and also con rm that the investigations are not completed, they are ongoing.”


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