Mark Thatcher starts court fight
Tuesday 26 October 2004
Sir Mark Thatcher arrived at magistrates' court in Cape Town today for a hearing on charges that he helped bankroll a coup attempt that failed in Equatorial Guinea.
The hearings today and tomorrow centre on the legality of the government subpoena of Thatcher, son of former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and a 51-year-old businessman who has lived in South African since 1995. He was arrested in Cape Town on 25 August.
Thatcher was subpoenaed in September to appear in Wynberg Magistrates' Court after the South African government granted an Equatorial Guinea request to question him about the allegations. Thatcher's lawyers argued, however, that it was unconstitutional to subpoena him to respond to those questions while he has related South African charges pending.
Equatorial Guinea wants to question a number of prominent Britons about allegations they financed a plot to overthrow President Teodoro Obiang Nguema, who has ruled Africa's third-largest oil producer for the past 25 years.
Thatcher's lawyers have maintained his innocence, saying he will cooperate with authorities.
Last month Simon Mann, a former British special forces commander and noted soldier of fortune accused of masterminding the failed coup plot, was sentenced to seven years in prison for trying to buy weapons from Zimbabwe's state arms manufacturer.
Mann's 67 accused co-conspirators, arrested when their aging Boeing 727 landed at the Harare International Airport on March 7, received sentences of 12-16 months for minor immigration and aviation violations.
- 1 Christmas comes early to Hong Kong, as millions of bank notes spill out onto busy street
- 2 The 'Black Museum': After 150 years, public can visit police’s grisly crime museum
- 3 British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
- 4 Vagina canoe artist facing two years in jail defends herself over ‘obscenity’ charges
- 5 The Queen’s speech 2014: Recap and Twitter reaction to Game of Thrones reference
PlayStation and Xbox hacked by Lizard Squad
Antonio Martin shooting: Black teenager may have tried to ambush patrolman, says police officer's lawyer
Katie Hopkins speaks out on childhood obesity: 'Parents of fat children should be prosecuted for child cruelty'
Boxing Day snowfall set to push even more bargain-hunters online for sales
The 'Black Museum': After 150 years, public can visit police’s grisly crime museum
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Rozanne Duncan: Ukip expels councillor for 'jaw-dropping' comments made in BBC TV interview
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Ukip member gets into Christmas spirit with Union Flag plea to Santa 'for our country back'
BBC director Danny Cohen: Rising UK antisemitism makes me feel more uncomfortable than ever
Alex Salmond has 'broken his word to the Scottish people' says Scottish Lib Dem leader
£40000 - £43000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Senior Marketing Executiv...
£40000 - £43000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: An international organisa...
£25000 - £30000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Internal Recruiter -Rugby, Warwicksh...
£70000 - £75000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager/Marketi...