South African Judge Nkola Motata has been sentenced to 12 months imprisonment with the option of a R20 000 fine following his conviction for drunken driving by the Johannesburg magistrate's court.
Arguments in mitigation and aggravation of sentence were completed this morning. Motata's defence counsel earlier asked the court for Motata's sentence to be wholly suspended. The State has argued that the fine could be as hefty as R120 000 or six years imprisonment. It says a wholly suspended sentence would be inappropriate and are asking for a R10 000 fine. Motata's driver's licence could also be suspended for six months.
The Judicial Service Commission (JSC) recently indicated that it will deal with the matter of Judge Nkola Motata at its meeting next month. JSC chairperson, Advocate Marumo Moerane, confirmed that there are complaints against Motata which have been pending before the JSC for some time awaiting the finalisation of the criminal case.
The High Court judge crashed his Jaguar into the wall of a residential property in Sandton in January 2007. Judge Nkola Motata's defence team has applied for leave to appeal his conviction and sentence in the Johannesburg Magistrate's Court.