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Two more people arrested for elaborate scam where SARS was defrauded of R1.8m

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Hawks said in 2018, the accused submitted fraudulent documents to SARS on behalf of two companies and received R1.8 million.

Nkosana Francis Zwane (left) and Lucky Nhlanhla Zwane have appeared in court on charges of fraud and money laundering linked to swindling the South African Revenue Service (SARS). Picture: Supplied/Hawks

THE HAWKS in Mpumalanga have arrested Nkosana Francis Zwane, 35, and Lucky Nhlanhla Zwane, 47, and they join four other accused facing charges of money laundering and fraud in connection with swindling the South African Revenue Service.

Spokesperson for the Hawks in Mpumalanga, Captain Dineo Lucy Sekgotodi said the two appeared before the Nelspruit Commercial Crimes Court on Tuesday, after their arrest.

“They were charged with money laundering in terms of the Prevention of Organised Crime Act,” Sekgotodi said.

“The duo allegedly received proceeds of crime after R100,000 and R25,000 was deposited into their bank accounts respectively by the owners of a company that allegedly defrauded the South African Revenue Service (SARS).”

The duo appeared in court with four other accused, Emmanuel Xolani 39, Phindile Ngwenya, 39, Charmaine Kalogwile, 36 and Clifford Phil Kalogwile, 29, who were arrested in July and released on R5,000 bail each.

“It is alleged that in July 2018, the accused submitted fraudulent documents to SARS on behalf of their two companies, Maestro Arts CC and Priscino Trading Enterprise Pty Ltd involving an estimated amount of R1.8m,” Sekgotodi said.

“The matter was reported to the Hawks for investigation and the accused were linked to the case. They were charged with contravention of Tax Administration Act, Value Added Tax Act 89/1991, Prevention of Organised Crime Act and money laundering.”

The case against the six accused was postponed to October 4 for further investigation.

Last month, the Nelspruit Specialised Commercial Crimes Court convicted and sentenced 46-year-old Themba Edlon Ndlovu for money laundering, in a case where SARS lost almost R1m to a group of fraudsters.

“The accused (Ndlovu) was sentenced to three years imprisonment or a R15,000 fine of which half of the sentence was suspended for five years. Ndlovu was instructed to pay back the prejudiced amount of R30,000 to the South African Revenue Service,” Sekgotodi said.

Ndlovu’s sentence followed the investigation by the Nelspruit-based Hawks’ Serious Commercial Crime Investigation Unit, where on April 29 last year, six suspects were arrested for fraud, theft or alternatively contravening the provisions of the Tax Administration Act and money laundering.

“Ndlovu, Themba Mabandla Pila, 34, Sthembiso Nelson Ubisi, 40, Baby Martha Malomane, 39, Patricia Nobuhle Ndlovu, 46, and Thokozani Caswell Shongwe, 41, unlawfully received undue funds from SARS between 2015 and 2017, which were paid into the company, Dlami Trading cc through misrepresentation and thereafter paid into their personal bank accounts,” Sekgotodi said.

She said SARS suffered a loss of R992,150.

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