National News

'Bomb' journo's trial moved

2010-05-28 15:32

Cape Town - A bomb-joke case involving retired German photo-journalist Berndt Jurgen Fischer was on Friday moved to the Cape Town Regional Court for trial.

Fischer, 68, made his final appearance in the town's District Court where magistrate Vusi Mhlanga remanded the case to June 11.

The reason behind the transfer was that the maximum sentence imposed in a district court is only three years, as compared to the regional court's 20-year sentence.

The transfer was an indication of how seriously the authorities viewed bomb threats and hoaxes. Fischer faces a charge under the Explosives Act.

Court papers state that the penalty for offences under the act could be a fine or imprisonment for up to 15 years.

Fischer was attending the 2010 soccer draw at Cape Town's International Conference Centre in December last year when he made a remark to security about a bomb.

He had been passing through a security point where bags and equipment were scanned, only to hear that his camera also needed to be scanned.

He then allegedly asked security staff if they thought he had a bomb in his camera. The remark resulted in his immediate arrest.

The charge sheet states that Fischer "communicated false information, knowing it to be false, regarding explosives".

Fischer's R5 000 bail was extended.

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