Four dirty tricks they played during the Jani Allan case: Nick Cohen and David Connett in London and Chris McGreal in Johannesburg peer into the murky background surrounding last week's Jani Allan libel case

THE sensational Jani Allan libel case has been almost overshadowed by an apparently orchestrated campaign of leaks, threats, thefts and violence which surrounded witnesses after they left the courtroom.

Even before the jury came to the conclusion that South African journalist had not been libelled by a Channel 4 programme about Eugene Terre Blanche, police had been called in to investigate the dirty tricks.

There have been hints that factions inside the neo-Nazi Afrikaner Weerstandsbeweging (AWB) movement of Terre Blanche or the South African security services have been running amok in London in the past fortnight. But, by yesterday, detectives investigating the incidents were rapidly coming to the conclusion that the conspiracy theories were without foundation.

They, Channel 4 and, though to a far lesser extent, one of Ms Allan's supporters, believe that the subterfuge and violence were the acts of unrelated individuals, each with a different axe to grind. Four dirty tricks have come under the spotlight:

The Mystery Diary. On the second day of the case a brown paper parcel was given to George Carman, Channel 4's counsel. Inside was Ms Allan's notebook from 1984, giving explicit descriptions of a supposed relationship with a married Italian airline pilot. As Ms Allan had previously said she would never have had an affair with a married man, the effect of Mr Carman's production of the diary was devastating and speculation has centred on who sent the document to the court and why.

It seems now that the mystery has been solved. Channel 4 advisers said they had given a statement to the police which conclusively showed that the diary had not been stolen by a sinister force.

They would not give details, but three different sources said the document had been left in the home of an English couple Ms Allan stayed with after arriving in Britain in 1989.

Anthony Travers, a former British representative of the AWB, who befriended Ms Allan before the trial, agreed with this account. 'The diary was obtained by a one-time friend,' he said.

The police do not seem to be carrying out a major inquiry into how the diary was obtained. All calls to one of the homes where Ms Allan stayed in Britain were being intercepted by the operator last week.

The filthy faxes. If the arrival of the diary helped Channel 4's already strong defence, the faxes sent to South African and British newspapers on the fifth day of the case could have undermined the character of Linda Shaw, one of the TV company's key witnesses, or intimidated her before she gave evidence. The papers received a draft statement from Andrew Broulidakis, a friend of Ms Allan, which was not to be given as evidence in court.

Mr Broulidakis told the jury that he had seduced Ms Shaw, Ms Allan's former flatmate in an attempt to find out what evidence she was giving on Channel 4's behalf.

Journalists who received the faxes said the draft statement went much further and gave a detailed and near pornographic account of the pair's encounter. The judge ordered the police to investigated this 'most serious contempt of court'.

A Stabbing on the Strand. On Day 11, Mr Travers, who was a spectator at the trial, staggered into an alleyway off the Strand opposite the High Court. He had a wound in the back. Mr Travers told The Independent on Sunday that he had been attacked in the lavatory of the George pub next to the alleyway. A man with a blue jacket came up behind him, stabbed him with a stiletto knife and briskly walked out.

There were no witnesses and no one saw the attacker leave the pub. No one noticed that Mr Travers was hurt until he got out of the building. He discharged himself from hospital and was reluctant to speak to the police at first. The wound was not serious.

Mr Travers is something of a rarity - an English supporter of the exclusively Boer AWB.

He lived in South Africa from 1948 to 1959. Since his return he has kept in touch with the country with a short-wave radio in his living-room. 'My loyalties are with the Afrikaner volk,' he said.

When Mr Travers was stabbed a court usher received a call saying Peter Carter-Ruck, Ms Allan's solicitor, had been stabbed. This fuelled rumours that the intended victim was Peter Carter-Ruck. The explanation seems to be that as Mr Travers was lying in an alleyway he said to a passer-by 'tell Carter-Ruck I've been stabbed'. In the Chinese whispers that followed it got translated to 'Carter-Ruck's been stabbed'.

The Burglaries. Ms Allan's flat near Kingston upon Thames was broken into during the hearing. Ms Allan also said she received a death threat when she answered a telephone call in the court ushers' offices. The hotel room of Stevie Godson, a Channel 4 producer, was also turned over.

Ms Allan suggested after the case that pro-government forces in South Africa wanted her to lose so that Terre Blanche would be 'irreparably damaged' in the eyes of his 'God fearing Calvinist followers'. It has also been suggested that the AWB wanted to steal a manuscript of a book she was writing about the organisation. Travers said the book was dynamite.

A photograph of a front cover of a book called White Sunset is in circulation in London. It shows Boer horsemen riding across the Veld. Some chapters have also been seen.

But 'Kays' Smit, Eugene Terre Blanche's former deputy and a principal defence witness, said he doubts that Ms Allan could supply earth-shattering revelations about the tactics of the extremists.

Smit, now leader of the far right HNP said: 'This started back in 1988. We had a discussion at my place, there were several of us, and Jani says she's going to write a book about the right-wing. But she isn't an Afrikaner, she doesn't know Afrikaners. She doesn't understand us.'

(Photographs omitted)

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: SAGE Bookkeeper & PA to Directors

£18000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An exciting opportunity has ari...

Recruitment Genius: Online Sales and Customer Services Executive

£15000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An On-line Sales & Customer Ser...

Recruitment Genius: Accounts Assistant - Fixed Term Contract - 6 Months

£15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the largest hospitality companies...

Recruitment Genius: Electricians - Fixed Wire Testing

£28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: As a result of significant cont...

Day In a Page

Seifeddine Rezgui: What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?

Making of a killer

What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?
UK Heatwave: Temperatures on the tube are going to exceed the legal limit for transporting cattle

Just when you thought your commute couldn't get any worse...

Heatwave will see temperatures on the Tube exceed legal limit for transporting cattle
Exclusive - The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Swapping Bucharest for London

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Meet the man who swapped Romania for the UK in a bid to provide for his family, only to discover that the home he left behind wasn't quite what it seemed
Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Solar power will help bring down electricity prices over the next five years, according to a new report. But it’s cheap imports of ‘dirty power’ that will lower them the most
Katy Perry prevented from buying California convent for $14.5m after nuns sell to local businesswoman instead

No grace of God for Katy Perry as sisters act to stop her buying convent

Archdiocese sues nuns who turned down star’s $14.5m because they don’t approve of her
Ajmer: The ancient Indian metropolis chosen to be a 'smart city' where residents would just be happy to have power and running water

Residents just want water and power in a city chosen to be a ‘smart’ metropolis

The Indian Government has launched an ambitious plan to transform 100 of its crumbling cities
Michael Fassbender in 'Macbeth': The Scottish play on film, from Welles to Cheggers

Something wicked?

Films of Macbeth don’t always end well - just ask Orson Welles... and Keith Chegwin
10 best sun creams for body

10 best sun creams for body

Make sure you’re protected from head to toe in the heatwave
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - Milos Raonic has ability to get to the top but he must learn to handle pressure in big games

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon files

Milos Raonic has ability to get to the top but he must learn to handle pressure in big games
Women's World Cup 2015: How England's semi-final success could do wonders for both sexes

There is more than a shiny trophy to be won by England’s World Cup women

The success of the decidedly non-famous females wearing the Three Lions could do wonders for a ‘man’s game’ riddled with cynicism and greed
How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth: Would people co-operate to face down a global peril?

How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth

Would people cooperate to face a global peril?
Just one day to find €1.6bn: Greece edges nearer euro exit

One day to find €1.6bn

Greece is edging inexorably towards an exit from the euro
New 'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could help surgeons and firefighters, say scientists

'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could become reality

Holographic projections would provide extra information on objects in a person's visual field in real time
Sugary drinks 'are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year'

Sugary drinks are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year

The drinks that should be eliminated from people's diets
Pride of Place: Historians map out untold LGBT histories of locations throughout UK

Historians map out untold LGBT histories

Public are being asked to help improve the map