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Former South African military sentenced to death in Juba

William John Endley, a South African national and an adviser to Riek Machar, stands in the dock, as his Lawyer looks on, in the High Court in Juba, February 13, 2018. (Reuters photo)
JUBA, Feb. 23 (JUBA) — A South Sudanese court Friday sentenced to death a former South African military who worked with the former South Sudanese First Vice President on charges of conspiracy to overthrow the government.

In addition to charges of conspiracy, Colonel William John Endley was accused of illegal entrance into South Sudan, espionage, conspiracy, waging an insurgency, and terrorism.

The retired army colonel was a military expert recruited to advise on the preparation and integration of the rebel fighters into the national army after the return of their leader to Juba in April 2016.

Endley was "sentenced to death by hanging" for espionage and conspiring to overthrow the government, said judge Ladu Armenio Sekwat the same judge who pronounced sentence on Machar’s spokesperson James Gatdet Dak, on 12 February.

The judge said evidence got from his laptop showed he provided the rebels with information that helped them in military engagement against the government army

The South African adviser was arrested in August after the eruption of clashes between the two armies in Juba one month before his arrest.

His lawyer Gardit Abel Gar said they would appeal the ruling.

He also contested the sentence saying it is against the cessation of hostilities agreement signed in December 2017 before the launch of the political forum for the revitalization of a peace deal brokered by the IGAD.

A South African, daily the Citizen reported that Endley before to work in South Sudan worked in Iraq as a private military contractor doing demining following his retirement from r South African National Defence Forces engineers.

(ST)