Pre-sentencing evidence in Avid-SSC saga next month

16 May 2018 18:00pm
WINDHOEK, 16 MAY (NAMPA) – The presentation of pre-sentencing evidence in the case of five persons found guilty in the N.dollars 30 million Avid Investment and Social Security Commission (SSC) fraud scandal, will be heard in the High Court next month.
The pre-sentencing evidence is set for 11 and 12 June 2018.
High Court Judge Christie Liebenberg announced the dates in court on Wednesday, as per agreement reached between the five convicts’ defence lawyers and the prosecution team.
The five are former Deputy Minister of Works, Transport and Communication, Paulus Kapia; Avid Investment Administrative Secretary, Inez //Gases; former Acting Secretary-General of the National Youth Council (NYC), Ralph Blaauw; his wife, Sharon Blaauw; and Windhoek businessman and Chief Executive Officer of Namangol Asset Management Company, Nico Josea.
Liebenberg on Friday found Kapia, //Gases and Ralph Blaauw guilty on the main charge of fraud for their involvement and responsibility of getting the money out of the SSC after the little-known, Avid Asset Management Company had secured the investment with the State-owned company.
The trio was, however, acquitted on the charge of theft, corruption and contravention of the provisions of the amended Companies Act of 2004.
Windhoek-based defence lawyer, Sharon Blaauw was only found guilty of contravening the provisions of the amended Companies Act of 2004, for having signed a number documentations without properly reading the contents of the documents. She was acquitted on all the other remaining charges.
Josea was found guilty on a charge of theft and contravention of the provisions of the amended Companies Act of 2004 on the grounds that after the N.dollars 30 million was transferred from the SSC bank account at First National Bank of Namibia to the business account of Namangol, he started dishing out money to several persons and business entities.
Josea was discharged on the main count of fraud.
Labour ministry official and lawyer, Otniel Podewiltz as well as retired Namibian Defence Force Brigadier, Mathias Shiweda were found not guilty of any wrongdoing and were set free.
Kapia, //Gases and the Blaauw couple had their bail of N.dollars 10 000 each reinstated as per requests by their defence lawyers.
Josea was not so lucky and was sent to the Windhoek Central Correctional Facility’s holding cells after the court refused to entertain his request for the reinstatement of bail.
Sisa Namandje appeared for Kapia, Petrie Theron for //Gases, while Gilroy Kasper represented the Blaauw couple and Podewiltz.
Slysken Makando appeared for Josea and Attorney Jan Wessels represented Shiweda.
Deputy Prosecutor-General Ed Marondedze assisted by State Advocates Cliff Lutibezi and Salomon Kanyemba.