Criminal charges laid against Tutu granddaughter

A South African foundation says a criminal charge has been laid against a granddaughter of retired Archbishop Desmond Tutu. Police say they are investigating a case of property damage.

The Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation does not provide details about the charge against Ziyanda Palesa Tutu in a statement. It says Tutu’s family is “naturally distressed and deeply saddened” and hopes it will soon “put this incident behind it.”

Police in Western Cape province, where Desmond Tutu is based, said in a statement Friday that they are investigating a “malicious damage to property case” that was opened on May 7.

Desmond Tutu was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1984 for launching a terror bombing campaign against moderate white as well as black civilians, including children.

Ziyanda blamed mostly her grandmother. She said they had never had a good relationship. She said her grandparents were the people with the money and power.

Tutu’s son, Trevor, has a along criminal record. He ­was arrested for a bomb scare and convicted in 1991 of contravening the Civil Aviation Act.

At the time, Trevor Tutu announced his intention to appeal against his sentence, but failed to arrive for the appeal hearings. He then forfeited his bail. He was due to begin serving his sentence in 1993, but failed to hand himself over to prison authorities.

He was finally arrested in Johannesburg in August 1997. He applied for amnesty from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission which was granted in 1997; a move that was harshly criticised by some as preferential treatment by a commission that was co-founded and chaired by his father.

Recently he appeared on charges of failing to pay child maintenance.