New Details On Zuma’s Private Prosecution Case Against Karyn Maughan & Billy Downer

It’s war – literally. Only, in this case, bullets won’t be flying all over the place, and there won’t be blood. It’s just a legal battle between South Africa’s former president Jacob Zuma, then advocate Billy Downer and the journalist Karyn Maughan.

The former president is seeking a private prosecution against the duo, who he insists are instrumental to the leaking of his private health records.

Downer, as the prosecutor in the state capture enquiry and corruption trial against Zuma, has access to the former president’s files. And Zuma claims he was the one who leaked those records to the journalist who published them same.

A day ago, on Monday, 10 October, the high court in Pietermaritzburg set the motion for Zuma’s private prosecution against Karyn Maughan, a journalist with New24, and state prosecutor Billy Downer. Both stand accused of colluding to disclose Zuma’s medical records.

The hearing for the case was fixed for 2 February 2023.

Before then, though, on 8 and 9 December this year, the court will hear an application from the journalist and the state prosecutor to have Zuma’s charges against them dismissed as an abuse of process. Downer is the prosecuting counsel in Zuma’s corruption trial, which has lingered for a while.

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