The department of environment, forestry & fisheries says it was forced to freeze the assets of Barnabas Xulu, Western Cape judge president John Hlophe’s long-time attorney, because of evidence that he was deliberately spending the more than R20m in legal fees it had unlawfully paid to his firm.

But Xulu is adamant the department is unfairly targeting him and has launched a second legal bid to overturn, respectively, a court order freezing his assets, which include a R6.9m Ballito holiday house and a Porsche 911 Carerra GTS, as well as a second ruling that forces him to hand over R3.4m the department says he himself has admitted his firm was wrongfully paid. ..

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