Thulsie twins case: State seeks info outside of South Africa

The case against terror-accused twins Brandon-Lee and Tony-Lee Thulsie has been postponed for more than a month to give the State time to gather information from sources outside of the country.

State advocate Chris MacAdam told the South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg on Monday that the prosecution was in the process of obtaining information from foreign agencies and that they needed at least four weeks to finalise the process.

He added that there had been further local investigation and that additional statements were required.

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"The proposal from my side is that we first make available this additional evidence," MacAdam said.

The court postponed the case to May 30.

The Thulsie twins' appearance was brief and the court gallery was almost empty.

When they entered the courtroom, the brothers smiled and greeted family members seated in the front row of the public gallery.

Abandoned application

The brothers were arrested during raids in Newclare and Azaadville on the West Rand in July 2016.

They were believed to be linked to the Islamic State (ISIS) and were allegedly planning to detonate explosives at a US embassy and Jewish institutions in South Africa, according to the charge sheet.

At their previous appearance, the court ordered the brothers to foot the legal bill for the Minister of Police, after they abandoned their application for access to police documents which they needed to prepare their defence.

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News24 previously reported that, in an indictment submitted to the court in April 2017, the State listed 12 activities the twins were allegedly instructed to carry out, using firearms, explosives and possibly poison.

It stated that, "in August 2015 [Tony-Lee] became a participant in a series of Telegram chats with Abu Fidaa, an ISIS network, and other persons whose real identities are unknown to the State, during which he was instructed to:

• attack the best targets involving "US/Brit/French interest in SA";
• kill cartoonist Zapiro, who drew the Messenger of Allah cartoon;
• kill Jews who fight in Israel and return to South Africa;
• kill affluent Jews; and
• kill a gay imam "as yet unidentified".

Other targets included King David High School in Linksfield, Johannesburg, the UK High Commission, the US and Russian embassies, the first secretary to the French mission, Jewish investment banker Roy Topol, the SA Zionist Federation Telfed, state-owned arms manufacturer Denel, Jewish community events and foreign interests at airports.

It is alleged that Tony-Lee discussed terrorist plans with an undercover US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agent between May and June 2016. He believed the agent was an ISIS operative, based in the US.
He allegedly sought advice about making bombs and asked for funding and is accused of soliciting support for ISIS, using his personal Facebook page.

Brandon-Lee allegedly acquired the Mujahideen Poisons Handbook by Abdel-Aziz, and the manual How to Survive in the West: A Mujahid Guide, which teaches readers how to "live a double life" and "how to keep your secret life private".