- The Hawks have confirmed that a 62-year-old man has been arrested for allegedly looting the Covid-19 UIF TERS fund
- The pensioner is now facing charges of fraud, theft and money laundering as a result
- The funds were intended for a company and after complaints, it was discovered that the funds landed in the suspect's account instead
The Hawks arrested a 62-year-old man over the weekend for allegedly looting R4.7 million from the Covid-19 Unemployment Insurance Fund TERS scheme.
Commenting on the arrest, spokesperson Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi explained that the man is now facing charges including fraud, theft and money laundering:
"The pensioner was arrested after he failed to disclose that he became a instant R4.7m millionaire. The money was meant to remunerate employees of a certain company to be disclosed in court papers."
It is understood that the pensioner had worked for the same company the funds had been intended for, with Mulaudzi commenting 58
"It is understood the suspect worked for the same company and allegedly used the reference number from his previous employers to apply for his UIF payout. It was later found, after numerous inquiries by the company, that the money was paid but was redirected to the suspect’s account."
Almost R4.6 million has been recovered with the man allegedly using almost R100 000 by the time authorities had caught up to him.
The pensioner is expected to appear in the Pretoria Specialised Commercial Crimes Court on Monday.
Hawks boss Lt-Gen Godfrey Lebeya was pleased to learn of the arrest by the Hawks but lamented the old man's behaviour:
"Pensioners are supposed to be role models to their children and grandchildren. Without suggesting the suspect's guilt, this behaviour suggests a bad role model."
Meanwhile, Briefly.co.za reported earlier that a separate case saw two police officers facing similar charges along with a civilian after looting an alleged R692 000 from the fund.
Mulaudzi had explained at the time that a company had applied for relief for its employees but the funds had never arrived:
"However, it emerged that the company’s banking details were fraudulently changed and the R692,000 was redirected to another bank account. It was ultimately found the account belonged to Mchunu, from the Durban Central Tactical Response Team."
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