News: Local

Former MM, officials in court on corruption charges

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Klerksdorp Record - Former Dr Kenneth Kaunda Municipality Manager, Adv Mhlupeki Abbey Dlavane (55), Lebohang Onica Bogatsu (59), Elijah Mahlangu (57), Sello Motsiri (56) and Victor Nicodemus (46) appeared in the Klerksdorp Regional Court earlier today on charges of fraud and corruption.

The Hawks’ Serious Commercial Investigation alleges that Dlavane worked in cahoots with the four co-accused who were employees of the municipality at the time, to defraud the District Municipality through various unlawful transactions to the tune of over R2-million for services that were never rendered.

It is alleged that the transactions took place during 2010, and one of them totalling R550 000 was allegedly disbursed to Kumekucha Investments, a company which was not listed on the suppliers database. Further investigation also revealed that Dlavane was a sole director of the said entity.

It is further alleged that the group arranged training for the Municipality employees through a bogus company. The said training never took place despite the fact that the municipality was billed for it. The same tactic was apparently employed with a different training entity but this time the Municipality was able to stop the payment beforehand after a whistle was blown to the group’s alleged illegal activities.

A further fraudulent attempt was made, where the Debtors’ Clerk allegedly conspired with the manager and authorised a payment of a substantial amount to a company, which had an arrangement with the municipality to accommodate students of a local College in Potchefstroom. The management of the Municipality was alerted to the fact that payment never reached the intended recipient which resulted in the cheque being intercepted and stopped. 

 All these cases were thoroughly investigated and submitted to the Directorate for Public Prosecution (DPP) for a decision which resulted in all five suspects being issued with summons on 6 May 2019 and their subsequent court appearance today. The case has been remanded to 11 September 2019 for the prosecutor to study the docket.

The National Head of the Directorate For Priority Crime Investigation, Lt Gen Godfrey Lebeya has welcomed the developments in this case.

 “While the matter has taken longer than expected, I appreciate the fact that the accused have now been secured before court. Those who continue to defraud municipalities must be rest assured that they will soon have their day in court,” he said.

Vietnamese four told to leave country

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Four Vietnamese men who were involved in the slaughtering and trafficking of lion bones, skin and meat were slapped with hefty fines and ordered to leave the country.

Mguyel Huu Son (30), NguyenTaun (33), Dao Thang (38) and Pham Kur (56), were declared undesirable persons and ordered to leave the country at their own cost. They were arrested for illegal possession of game products on 26 November 2018 outside Klerksdorp. The Vietnamese men were denied bail and were in jail since their arrest.

The case against three South Africans who were arrested with them, Louis Fouche (22), Lourens Pretorius (24) and Michael Frederich Fourie (42) will continue on 23 July in the Klerksdorp Magistrates Court. They are on bail of R10 000 each.

Capt Tlangelani Rikotso, spokesperson of the Hawks in North West, said in a statement that the Vietnamese men reached a sentence agreement with the state. They were fined between R8 000 and R50 000 each and had to pay the money to avoid jail time.

Charges were dropped against Pham Xuan Chanh (56) and Quol Thang (60) and they were released.

 

SAPS bust drug den, foreigners arrested

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Klerksdorp Record, Klerksdorp - A foreign couple was arrested in Klerksdorp by the Hawks’ Narcotics Enforcement Bureau (SANEB) for illegal possession of drugs and dealing in drugs. According to the provincial spokesperson, Capt Tlangelani Rikhotso, the arrests followed a tip-off about drugs being sold from a parked vehicle in the CBD. The suspect was ambushed on Monday 8 July after parking his vehicle in OR Tambo Street near a popular supermarket.

To read the full story, read page 3 of our 12 July 2019 issue.

Fleeing suspects in custody

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Klerksdorp Record, Klerksdorp - Two men connected to a robbery at a business in Coligny appeared briefly in the Klerksdorp Magistrates Court on Friday 5 July. Tebogo Ndzimankulu (37) and Thapelo Bobbejaan (39) were remanded in custody.

To read the full story, read page 3 of our 12 July 2019 issue.

Most wanted suspect nailed

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Klerksdorp Record, Klerksdorp - One of the province’s most wanted suspects, Godfrey Moganedi, was arrested in a crime sweep last week. According to Lt Col Amanda Funani, police spokesperson, Moganedi has been on the run since 2012 for business robbery and carjacking committed in the Lichtenburg Area. He was one of the province’s top 50 most wanted suspects.

To read the full story, read page 5 of our 12 July 2019 issue.