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Three in court after alleged attack on US tourist

November 3, 2003

CAPE TOWN — Three men appeared briefly in the Wynberg Magistrate's Court on Friday as a sequel to an attack on United States tourist James Girod on Monday.

Girod, a yoga teacher from Oregon, was left with chipped front teeth and a black eye after being attacked on Sandy Bay beach, on the Atlantic seaboard. Anti-gay hate-speech was allegedly used during the incident.

Garth Cason, 21, of Melkbos appeared before magistrate Mas-udah Pangarker, charged with assault and crimen injuria.

With him in the dock was Edwin Pool, 20, of Table View, and Brian Joseph, 22, of Bothasig, all of whom face similar charges.

The three were arrested on Thursday as a result of a tip-off to the police and were released on warning soon after their arrests.

Prosecutor Brenda Mpako told the court the case had been referred to the Directorate for Public Prosecutions for a decision, and she asked for a postponement to November 4.

Cason told the court he would appoint a privately-funded lawyer while Pool said he wanted legal aid. Joseph said he would probably represent himself and added: "There is no need for legal aid."

Mpako said that Girod wished to return to the United States on November 10 and that he was likely to lodge a civil claim against the three as well.

She said all the documentation had been referred to the public prosecutions director Rodney de Kock and that the investigation had also not yet been completed.

Mpako said she had been instructed by the de Kock to request a postponement. –Sapa
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