Orlando Pirates midfielder Motshwari arrested, released and charges revealed

Ben Motshwari, Orlando Pirates, January 2021Backpagepix

Gauteng police have revealed why Orlando Pirates midfielder Ben Motshwari handed himself over to police on Monday morning.

The 30-year-old was briefly detained by Randfontein police and further details were revealed later.

Gauteng police spokesperson, Captain Mavela Masondo first confirmed the arrest of the Pirates midfielder.

“He was arrested but released this afternoon. The court decided not to enroll the matter, however, the investigation is ongoing,” said Captain Masondo as per Sowetan Live.

Masondo revealed the reason for the arrest later, as reported by News24: "A 30-year-old male handed himself [over] to the police on Monday 20 September 2021 after a case of Common Assault was opened against him. The suspect was charged and taken to court. The docket was struck off the roll by the court, pending further investigation."

Earlier on in the day, Pirates had announced that they had suspended the player. The club added it was investigating the matter subject to “a legal process.”

“Orlando Pirates Football Club can confirm that it has suspended midfielder Ben Motshwari after being charged by police this morning,” said Pirates in a statement.

“Mr Motshwari will remain suspended, pending an investigation. The matter is subject to a legal process and the club is, therefore, unable to make further comment until that process is complete.”

Now that the player has been released and will not appear before the court, it is not yet clear what the next action the Buccaneers will take.

Motshwari’s suspension comes as Pirates are preparing to host Premier Soccer League leaders Mamelodi Sundowns at Orlando Stadium on Saturday.

The central midfielder recently returned from injury and featured in the Buccaneers' last two league games.

He came on as a substitute during last Saturday’s 3-1 win away at Chippa United and played the final nine minutes of the match. 

In the previous game, the 1-0 victory over Swallows FC, he appeared in the final five minutes.

If his suspension is lifted, he will have to continue trying to remove Abel Mabaso from the central midfield position.

But the versatile Mabaso has been impressive in that position and was named Man-of-the-Match against Chippa United.