Events have taken a bizarre twist after The Star first published an article about Jose Williams and his plight, in which the magistrate handling his daughter’s case denied that the infant had ever been the subject of any adoption proceedings and refused to comment any further.
The Star had simultaneously also asked Abba Adoptions manager Katinka Pieterse to confirm or deny that the magistrate in question, Sarie Snyman, had previously travelled overseas with Abba. She declined to do so and suggested that “you follow that up with her”.
Snyman then wrote a letter to Williams’ attorneys, which was also placed in Baby T’s court file, in which she stated: “Myself as commissioner has received threatening phone calls from a Johannesburg newspaper, after I refused to give out any information for publication regarding this matter. After this, I received constant anonymous phone calls, which I experienced as threatening and most upsetting.”
Snyman has refused to explain her claims to lawyers for The Star, which was the only newspaper to write about Williams and his battle for his daughter. Nor has she laid any charges related to the alleged threats. – Karyn Maughan
This article was originally published on page 1 of The Star on December 11, 2008