[QODLink]
Africa

Mandela coup plotters jailed in South Africa

Members of right-wing group Boeremag sentenced in post-apartheid trial for plotting to assassinate Mandela.

Last Modified: 29 Oct 2013 15:18
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Members were given sentences from five to thirty-five years ending the decade long trial [AFP]

A South African judge has sentenced 20 members of the Afrikaner white supremacist group Boeremag after being found guilty last year of high treason and plotting to kill Nelson Mandela, among other charges.

The state media reported that Judge Eben Jordaan handed the sentences out on Tuesday to end the decade-long trial.

The sentences ranged from five to 35 years in the country's first post-apartheid treason trial after members of Boeremag, or white farmer force, were found guilty last year of plotting to overthrow the country's government in the late 1990s and early 2000. Some sentences were suspended due to time served, according to reports by South African TV channel EnCA.

The leader of the group and four members of its bomb squad were given some of the longest sentences, having been convicted of culpable homicide and conspiring to murder Nelson Mandela.

The members planted a bomb on a road Mandela was scheduled to take for a visit to a school in Limpopo Province, but failed when the anti-apartheid leader changed plans to take a helicopter to the school.

According to South African media reports, the Boermag planned to exploit the destablisation the assassination would unleash to then stage a coup and recreate a whites-only Afrikaaner state.

The group, which includes former engineers, medical doctors and military officers, also claimed responsibility for a series of bombs that killed a woman and caused damage throughout the South African township of Soweto in 2002.

This was one of South Africa's longest running trials and it was one of the most expensive costing the country abou $3.6mn, according to the non-governmental group, Legal Aid.

Boeremag is an extreme group of Afrikaners, the white South Africans of Dutch, French and German descent who ruled the country under the racist apartheid regime that ended in 1994.

291

Source:
Al Jazeera and agencies
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Featured on Al Jazeera
'Justice for All' demonstrations swell across the US over the deaths of African Americans in police encounters.
Six former Guantanamo detainees are now free in Uruguay with some hailing the decision to grant them asylum.
Disproportionately high number of Aboriginal people in prison highlights inequality and marginalisation, critics say.
Nearly half of Canadians have suffered inappropriate advances on the job - and the political arena is no exception.
Featured
Women's rights activists are demanding change after Hanna Lalango, 16, was gang-raped on a bus and left for dead.
Buried in Sweden's northern forest, Sorsele has welcomed many unaccompanied kids who help stabilise a town exodus.
A look at the changing face of North Korea, three years after the death of 'Dear Leader'.
While some fear a Muslim backlash after café killings, solidarity instead appears to be the order of the day.
Victims spared by the deadly disease are reporting blindness and other unexpected post-Ebola health issues.