Publication: The Star Issued: Date: 2004-10-20 Reporter: Estelle Ellis

Secretary 'Could Have Typed Note Anytime'



The Star

Date 2004-10-20


Estelle Ellis

Web Link


The mystery around a French secretary's discovery of a so-called document purporting to detail a bribe to Deputy President Jacob Zuma deepened during cross-examination at the Shaik trial today.

Questioned by Francois van Zyl SC, Susan Delique said she had told the auditors of French arms company Thomson-CSF about the alleged bribe document that she had been asked to type.

Delique made it clear that she did not tell the auditors that she had a typed version of the document on a disc, claiming she only discovered the disc in September this year, which she had happened to grab as she left the company.

But Van Zyl said he had a sworn statement by an auditor taken during the discussions in April 2000 that said Delique's possession of the typed document was talked about.

"(The auditor) told her she could have typed anything she liked," Van Zyl said. "The statement further said that even though Delique claimed to have both the handwritten fax and the typed version, the auditors never saw either."

Schabir Shaik has pleaded not guilty in the Durban High Court to charges of fraud and corruption.

Sapa reports that Judge Hillary Squires again lashed out at the media for inaccurate reporting regarding evidence which was led in the trial yesterday. He said some media representatives did not follow the exchange between counsel regarding the hand-written note and warned it was not evidence of the truth unless the author was identified. "Until then it is hearsay," Squires said.

Yesterday Shaik's counsel said they would contest the admissibility of the document.

Thetard, now in France and refusing to testify in the trial, said in an affidavit earlier this year that the note was merely a rough draft of a document that he threw into the waste paper basket.

With acknowledgements to Estelle Ellis and The Star.