The pre-trial hearing of former security police sergeant Joao “Jan” Rodrigues has been postponed to October the 15th in the High Court in Johannesburg. 80-year-old Rodrigues is accused of being involved in the murder of anti-apartheid activist, Ahmed Timol.

Almost 47 years after Timol’s death, the High Court in Pretoria in 2017 found that he had died at the hands of apartheid security branch police while in detention.

João Rodrigues made a brief appearance in the dock before his case was postponed to allow his new defence time to properly study the court documents.

His attorney Jaap Cilliers indicated to the court that he was only assigned to this case for two weeks and he still needs time to read over thousands of court papers.

Cilliers also indicated to the court that he will be preparing an application for the permanent stay of prospection for Rodrigues but would not elaborate.

In 2017, the reopened inquest into anti-apartheid activist Ahmed Timol’s death found that he had been tortured and murdered during his detention in John Vorster Square in October 1971.