S. African policeman arrested in fresh dragging assault

JOHANNESBURG (AFP) - A South African police sergeant was arrested for dragging a man by his neck from a vehicle just weeks after a similar assault, the force's watchdog said Thursday.

The latest victim, a court interpreter, was attacked in North West province after speaking to a boy who had been harassed by two officers, said Moses Dlamini, spokesman for the Independent Police Investigative Directorate.

It follows the recent video of police officers dragging a Mozambican man behind a police van to a police station near Johannesburg where he died in custody.

The interpreter was called over by the police officers and "grabbed" by the neck by the driver who "asked him if he knew what police were capable of these days," said Mr Dlamini. "The policeman allegedly drove off and dragged the complainant for about 100 metres."

The man's feet were injured and he was taken to hospital by a neighbour.

The assault was said to have followed his having advised the boy on actions he could take following the harassment incident.

The attack happened on March 7 but the case was only reported this week.

The sergeant was arrested at his workplace on Wednesday and will appear in court on Friday on assault charges.

In the other case, nine police officers were denied bail this week after being charged for the murder of the Mozambican man, taxi driver Mido Macia.

He was found lying dead last month in a blood-soaked cell with head wounds and bleeding on the brain.