Australian paedophile fights to remain in South Africa

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An Australian sex offender is fighting not to be extradited back to Australia for prosecution. This, after being caught again for despicable criminal acts in South Africa. 

The 80-year-old Anthony Peter Freedendal wants Justice Minister Ronald Lamola’s decision to send him back to Australia to face child sex charges to be reviewed and set aside. Freedendal’s demands stem from him citing ill health.

Freedendal was initially arrested in Port Lincoln, Australia, in July 2011 on child sex charges, but was released on bail.

He was charged with sexually assaulting children between June 1999 and January 2003. His victims were said to be girls and boys, ranging from the ages of seven to 11.

With the above-mentioned in mind, Minister Lamola has updated the public on priority mutual legal and extradition requests involving SA.

Lamola said that on 27 July 2020, he issued an order in terms of section 11(a) for the surrender of Freedendal, who then lodged a High Court application, consisting of a Part A and a Part B.

In Part A of the application, Freedendal sought an order that he be released pending the hearing of Part B of the application due to his health conditions.

In Part B, an order is sought that the surrender order issued by the Minister be reviewed and set aside. The application is being opposed and the State Attorney will liaise with Freedendal’s attorneys to obtain a court date for Part B of the application to be heard.

However, his application is being opposed and a court date is still to be determined.

With a legal battle now underway, how did the sex offender manage to get into the country?

After receiving bail for his alleged crimes in Australia, he was given permission to visit South Africa on the condition that he return by 21 November 2011.

However, he never returned. Instead, Freedendal found himself in further hot water when was arrested and charged with the sexual abuse of children in Cape Town.

Pleading guilty to the crimes, he was sentenced to five years imprisonment in April 2015. Then, 10 months later, Lamola explained that the Parole Board found Freedendal eligible for parole under correctional supervision.

Freedendal was supposed to be released on parole in August 2016 and start his period of correctional supervision. However, shortly before he was meant to be released, Australian authorities issued a request for his extradition.

This followed further legal enquiries which resulted in the Wynberg Magistrates Court in Cape Town finding Freedendal liable to be extradited and ordered that he be held in custody until then-justice minister Michael Masutha made a final decision on the extradition, in October 2017.

Freedendal initially lodged an appeal, but he then withdrew after he made representations to the justice minister in 2018, requesting that he not be sent back to Australia.

In addition to the representation letter filed by Freedendal’s legal team, documents, which included details on his health status, were provided to South African authorities.

While the accused paedophile is fighting tooth and nail to not be sent back to Australia, citing ill health, Lamola explained that the Australian Central Authority informed the South African Central Authority that the Prison Health Services will be responsible for Freedendal’s health care and that they would be able to manage his conditions.

“This was confirmed by a doctor,” verified the Minister.

With the legal battle now rapidly coming to an end, and this awful human hopefully leaving our country soon, what are your thoughts? 

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