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Clerk gets six years for fraud and money laundering

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A senior administration clerk who was employed by the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development, based at the Masters Office at the Northern Cape High Court, was sentenced to six years imprisonment after he pleaded guilty to 148 charges of fraud and money laundering.

A SENIOR administration clerk who was employed by the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development, based at the Masters Office at the Northern Cape High Court, was sentenced to six years imprisonment after he pleaded guilty to 148 charges of fraud and money laundering to the value of R445 000.

National Prosecuting Authority regional spokesperson Mojalefa Senokoatsane on Thursday said the accused, Michael Mogoje, 55, was charged for defrauding the department where he processed claims for non-existent services rendered to minors under the administration of the Guardian Fund.

“During the trial, the court heard that between 2008 to 2015, the accused fabricated false claims or made requests purported to be from minors to release funds from the Guardian Fund. The accused would motivate the approval of the claims and payments would be effected for services that were never rendered. All these claims or requests dealt with various kinds of services, ranging from accommodation costs to purchasing of educational material.”

He added that in an attempt to conceal the source of the proceeds of his crimes, the accused requested his friends/co-accused to pretend to have rendered certain services to the minors.

“This resulted in the Master of the High Court making payments into accounts of his friends, who later became his co-accused.

“After receiving the money, the accused and his friends would share the money amongst themselves.”

Senokoatsane indicated that the accused pleaded guilty to 74 counts of fraud and 74 counts of money laundering.

“The Kimberley Commercial Crimes Court sentenced him to six years imprisonment for fraud and four years imprisonment for money laundering. The sentences will run concurrently. The money stolen was recovered in full from his pension.

“Advocate Sue-Ann Weyers represented the state in this matter.”

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