The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) has won a crucial victory its state-capture prosecution campaign, with the Bloemfontein magistrate’s court refusing to strike the Estina Dairy project case from the roll. But the court criticised the state for "reprehensible" delays in the finalisation of the case‚ and ordered it to provide all the accused in the trial with a finalised case docket and indictment by November 30. That means the state must have its case finalised in just more than two months’ time. It has also agreed to relax the bail conditions of all the accused. The case has been postponed until December 4. The ruling clearly came as a shock to the Estina accused‚ which include Gupta family and business associates‚ as well as former Free State agriculture department officials. The Guptas’ nephew, Varun Gupta, had appeared upbeat when he arrived for the court appearance‚ and smiled and greeted journalists.

After the ruling‚ he appeared shell-shocked. Another Gupta family...

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