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Ted Butler: You can''t always get what you want

Section: Daily Dispatches

10:55p ET Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Dear Friend of GATA and Gold:

South African gold mining executive Brett Kebble
was murdered last night while driving near his
home in Johannesburg. Without his help the Gold
Anti-Trust Action Committee might never have
gotten started, and so we are horrified and
want to send our condolences to his family and

The Bloomberg News Service story about Kebble's
murder is appended, along with a link to
MoneyWeb's story by Alec Hogg, which reports
that the murder seems to have been something
more than random violence.

CHRIS POWELL, Secretary/Treasurer
Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee Inc.

* * *

South African Gold Magnate
Brett Kebble is Shot Dead

By Stewart Bailey and Antony Sguazzin
Bloomberg News Service
Wednesday, September 28, 2005

South African millionaire Brett Kebble, who helped create two of the
country's four largest gold producers, was shot dead last night near
his home in Johannesburg, police and a family spokesman said.

Kebble, 41, was shot while driving on Johannesburg's Atholl-Oaklands
road, Chris Wilken, a spokesman for the South African police, said
in an interview today.

"He was shot between 9 p.m. and 9:15 p.m.," Wilken said. "He may
have been followed. He was shot while he was driving. More than one
shot was fired." Nothing was taken from the car.

Kebble quit on Aug. 30 as head of Western Areas Ltd., joint owner of
a $24 billion gold deposit near Johannesburg, and two other gold-
investment companies after Western Areas ran out of money and he
faced questions from investors in Randgold & Exploration Ltd., one
of the companies, over the whereabouts of shares worth $268 million.

Wilken said the police were unaware of the motive for the shooting.
As of 1 a.m. local time his body was still in his silver S-Class
Mercedes car, parked on Atholl-Oaklands on a bridge above
Johannesburg's M1 highway. He lived in the nearby Inanda suburb.

David Barritt, a spokesman for the family, confirmed the death in an
e-mailed statement.

Kebble's 11-year career in South Africa's $5.5 billion-a-year gold
industry spawned Harmony Gold Mining Co., South Africa's No. 3 gold
miner, DRDGold Ltd., the fourth-largest, and the development of
South Deep, the world's largest gold deposit, with Canadian partner
Placer Dome Inc.

Kebble quit his jobs at Western Areas, Randgold and JCI Ltd. after
Johannesburg-based Investec Ltd., South Africa's No. 5 bank, told
investors it wouldn't free up a 460 million-rand ($71 million) loan
to keep the companies afloat unless he left.

Western Areas and JCI said on Aug. 30 in statements to the stock
exchange in Johannesburg that Investec insisted that their boards be
changed before they made the loan. The companies announced the
resignations that day of Kebble and non-executive director Sello

Kebble's partnership with Placer began in 1999, when Kebble helped
secure a $235 million investment from the Vancouver-based miner,
ensuring South Deep's development. The project to dig the 3.3
kilometer (2.1 mile) mine went awry as it ran up costs of more than
$1 billion. South Deep is 2 1/2 years behind schedule.

The delays at South Deep were compounded by Kebble's bet in June
2002, through futures contracts, that the gold price would fall. The
price of bullion has since surged 40 percent.

As a result of derivative contracts Western Areas holds, the company
sold its gold at $308 an ounce in the quarter ended June 30,
compared with a an average market price of $427.88. Production costs
were $426 an ounce.

Kebble was born in the gold mining town of Springs, east of
Johannesburg, and schooled in the Free State province before
graduating in law from the University of Cape Town in 1988. He
entered business after his mining engineer father, who once worked
for Anglo American Plc, sold his Cape wine farm and came out of
retirement in 1991.

Teaming up with Adam Fleming, a relative of the James Bond spy-novel
author Ian Fleming, Kebble joined Randgold, working initially under
Executive Chairman Peter Flack. After accumulating a majority stake
in the company, he fired Flack and installed himself as chief
executive. He was 32 at the time.

"He was one of the brightest corporate financiers I ever met, and
I've met some clever ones in my time," Flack said in an Aug. 17
interview from Johannesburg.

Harmony, DRDGold and Randgold Resources Ltd., all of which were spun
out of Randgold during Kebble's period as a director, have a
combined market value of 34 billion rand.

The family's possessions include multimillion-rand properties
ranging from a three-storey house overlooking Cape Town's Atlantic
coast to Melrose Place, a national monument in northern Johannesburg
once owned by Gavin Relly, a former chairman of London-based Anglo

Kebble's plan to weld together seven companies in which his family
held stakes and trade the company's shares in Toronto was scuppered
five years ago by Harmony's Chief Executive Bernard Swanepoel, a
former mine manager under Kebble who started and won a hostile
takeover for the biggest of the companies, Randfontein Estates Ltd.

The legacy of that contest is that Kebble faced charges of fraud,
conspiracy and contravention of South Africa's Companies Act,
Lucinda Moonieya, a spokeswoman for South Africa's Public
Prosecutor's Office said in an e-mail on Aug. 31. The case was due
to be heard in October next year.

On Nov. 3, 2003, Kebble said he would contest charges announced by
Johannesburg High Court Judge Joop Labuschagne.

Shareholders including Aflease Gold & Uranium Ltd., which owns 12
percent of Randgold & Exploration, had asked Kebble to account for
stock the company owned in Randgold Resources.

Randgold & Exploration's shares were suspended from trading on
Johannesburg's stock exchange on Aug. 1 after the company missed a
deadline to submit annual financial statements.

Kebble is survived by his wife and four children.

* * *

MoneyWeb's story by Alec Hogg:


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