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Arms dealer in court for pre-trial hearing

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The pre-trial hearing of a Vereeniging arms dealer, who faces gun-related charges ranging from racketeering to theft, is expected to start in the Western Cape High Court on Friday.

Alan Raves, 50, who is also a gun collector, was meant to appear in court for a pre-trial hearing alongside Rondebosch businessman Irshaad Laher on November 4, 2016.

But at these proceedings, the court heard that Raves was admitted to a hospital in Vereeniging, Gauteng, in October. He suffered multi-organ dysfunction, was placed on a ventilator, and underwent dialysis. His lawyer had been unable to talk to him.

Raves was arrested in August 2015 after firearms, including assault rifles and small-calibre arms, were seized.

Laher is accused of buying guns from former police colonel Chris Prinsloo of Vereeniging, who was recently sentenced to 18 years behind bars after entering into a plea and sentence agreement with the State.

He pleaded guilty to 11 charges including theft, racketeering, and money laundering. He was in charge of a police armoury and stole 2 400 guns over almost a decade.

In his plea agreement, Prinsloo said he provided guns to a man in Cape Town.

Prinsloo apparently met Laher in Gauteng when he was a police officer and Laher a reservist.

After his arrest, he told police that he sold about 2 000 guns to Laher, the State alleges.

Prinsloo pleaded guilty to stealing guns and ammunition destined for destruction and reselling them, primarily to gangs on the Cape Flats.

[Source: News24 ]
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