A director in the Department of Labour who discovered police records incorrectly reflected that there was a criminal case pending against him, has succeeded in the first step of his bid to sue the SAPS for reputational damages.

Vincent Luvhengo turned to the Gauteng High Court (Pretoria) after he had found out that his name was listed on the Local Criminal Records Centre of the SAPS, notes a report in The Mercury.

The record has since been corrected.

Judge Norman Davis said: ‘It is easy to imagine one’s dismay at finding out that, unbeknown to oneself, the records kept by the Local Criminal Records Centre of the SAPS indicate that one has either been found guilty of a crime or there is a criminal case pending against one.’

Luvhengo was involved in a car accident in 2011. He was arrested on charges of driving under the influence, negligent or reckless driving or culpable homicide.

The last charge related to a woman (20) who died at the scene.

The inquest court, however, cleared Luvhengo of wrongdoing, concluding a burst tyre caused the vehicle to overturn.

The case docket reflected that the criminal case had been closed.

Luvhengo found out in 2018 that he was flagged as having a criminal record.

It was somehow reflected that he was guilty of culpable homicide, and that he had paid R1 000 ‘as acknowledgement of guilt fine’.

Full report in The Mercury