Exception to plea – upholding an exception disposes of the pleading, not the action or defence – ordinarily therefore the court should grant leave to amend and not dispose of the matter – an excipient has a duty to persuade the court that upon every interpretation which the plea can bear no defence is disclosed - tacit agreement pleaded constitutes a termination of the written agreement, not a variation thereof.
Appeal against refusal of petition for leave to appeal against conviction and sentence for robbery with aggravating circumstances – no reasonable prospects of success concerning conviction – concerning sentence, trial court appeared not to have taken into account period of about three and a half years spent by appellants awaiting trial – reasonable prospects of success on appeal against sentence.
Criminal law and procedure – minimum sentence legislation - respondent convicted on two counts of murder and one count of robbery with aggravating circumstances – court a quo finding no substantial and compelling circumstances but failing to impose prescribed minimum sentences on second count of murder and robbery with aggravating circumstances - minimum sentences of life imprisonment and 15 years’ imprisonment imposed.
Rape – sentence – life imprisonment - appellant and complainant aged 23 and 16 years respectively – period awaiting trial one of several factors to be considered cumulatively in determining whether substantial and compelling circumstances exist and proportionality of sentence – interference only if misdirection or trial court’s sentence grossly disproportionate.
Appeal – whether the high court should have granted leave to appeal to it against a conviction of attempted rape – reasonable prospect of a finding that the intention to penetrate was not established beyond reasonable doubt – appropriate to dispose of appeal without oral hearing – appeal upheld and leave granted to appeal to high court.
Prescription: extinctive prescription: Prescription Act 68 of 1969, ss 10, 11 and 12: obligation to pay transfer costs and to transfer property sold constituting a debt which is susceptible to prescription: date of commencement of the running of prescription: running of prescription commences once the creditor has acquired right to claim the debt.
Administrative law – common law review – unreasonable delay – assumption of prospects of success on merits – outweighed by potential for severe resultant prejudice – refusal of condonation – whether court justified in mulcting appellant with costs.
Promotion of Administrative Justice Act 3 of 2000, s 7(2) – failure to exhaust internal remedy prior to instituting judicial review proceedings – whether this is an appropriate case to grant exemption in terms of s 7(2)(c) where administrator alleged to be biased or reasonably suspected of bias – court finding that internal remedy ineffective and inadequate.