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Alleged extortion syndicate boss Nafiz Modack has allegedly been starving in prison as officials refuse to serve him Halaal food.

Modack and Jacques Cronje appeared in the Alexandra Magistrate’s Court on Monday on charges of intimidation and extortion. They remain in custody and will be back in court on Thursday.

They allegedly extorted the Grand strip club in Rivonia‚ Johannesburg.

On Monday‚ the pair appeared under heavy police guard. Their hands and feet were chained.

The heavily armed Tactical Response Team (TRT) escorted them in and out of court.

Modack’s lawyer Johannes Eksteen told the court that his client‚ who is Muslim‚ has been deprived of food since his incarceration. He said the officials refused to allow his family to bring him Halaal food. He was told to eat what was being served in the prison.

“Prison officials told him that they got instructions to not allow him to get food from family and friends. In terms of the constitution‚ that is totally inhumane‚” Eksteen said.

Magistrate Gideon Schnetler told him to take the matter up with prison officials.

Modack and Cronje were taken back to the Johannesburg prison in two unmarked state vehicles which were escorted by a branded police van and a minibus.

As they descended the stairs to the police cells after their appearance‚ Modack was seen waving at a woman believed to be his relative.

Cronje is allegedly a pivotal figure in a syndicate that “intimidates” club owners into accepting protection from their security group.

He and Modack‚ along with others‚ are already facing nine charges in Cape Town for allegedly extorting the Grand Cafe in Green Point and intimidating the complainants.

An affidavit by the investigating officer in the case made by the Grand was handed in to court by the state as evidence to support their opposition to bail.

The Grand manager had opened a case after being threatened.

“Both Modack and Cronje sent threatening SMSes‚ indicating that they will burn down the establishment and that there will be fireworks at the Grand‚” reads the affidavit.

Modack has claimed during a bail application‚ that his alleged extortion of the Grand Café in Cape Town was a “business transaction”.

Explaining Modack’s claims that his business transaction with the Grand was legitimate‚ his senior advocate Dirk Uys said:[tooltip id=”4500c2f113202943ff1ae30d00c9d4ac”] [/tooltip]“If a larger person in the street walks up to a somewhat smaller and timid person and says to him ‘give me your wallet’ and the person takes out his wallet and gives it to him‚ that’s not robbery.”

Judgment in Modack’s bail application will be handed down on February 28.

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