24 Jan 2019 16:10pm
WINDHOEK, 24 JAN (NAMPA) The procedures used by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) when issuing summons to obtain access to records and bank accounts of three people arrested in connection with massive fraud at the Finance Ministry in 2009, are invalid and unlawful.
Two Namibians - Teckla Lameck and Jerobeam Mokaxwa, and Chinese national, Yang Fan, were arrested in July 2009 for alleged fraud of N.dollars 120 million at the Ministry of Finance over the purchase of security scanning equipment.
On Thursday, High Court Judge Christie Liebenberg gave a ruling during a trial-within-a-trial, saying that the ACCs director and his team of investigators did not follow the correct procedures when they issued summons to obtain access to the records and bank accounts of the three accused persons.
The procedures and the validity of the summons issued by the Director of the ACC, Paulus Noa, and his team of investigators on 11 June 2009 are invalid and all the evidence emanating from these summons are invalid and unlawful, said the judge in his ruling.
In the result, the summons and all evidence of exhibits emanating from the issued summons cannot be used against the three accused persons during the trial.
Furthermore, the judge said that the conduct of the ACCs director and his team should be condemned in the strongest terms for their failure to follow the correct requirements and procedures of the ACC Act in respect of the issuance of summons.
The alleged massive fraud case of the three accused was, thereafter, postponed to 28 January 2019 for the continuation of the main trial as per agreement reached between the prosecution and defence in court on Thursday.
In the matter, the trio each denied any wrongdoing when they entered not guilty pleas at the start of their trial.
The three accused denied guilt to a total of 18 charges of fraud, an alternative count of theft, three charges in respect of the Immigration Control Act 7 of 1993, two charges under the Prevention of Organised Crime Act 29 of 2004 and a charge under the Anti-Corruption Act 8 of 2003, a count of theft by false pretences under the provisions of the Motor Vehicle Theft Act 12 of 1999, on which they are accused of allegedly having conspired to commit the criminal acts.
The State alleges the three defrauded the Namibian Government, the Ministry of Finance or its permanent secretary of about N.dollars 120 million, between 01 October 2006 and 17 March 2009 by creating the impression that co-accused Yang was only representing Chinese security scanning equipment manufacturer, Nuctech Company in the negotiation and finalisation of an agreement between the ministry and Nuctech.
Yang also represented Teko Trading CC, a close corporation of Lameck and Mokaxwa.
The trio had allegedly inflated the purchasing price of the security scanning equipment so that commission payments could be made to Teko Trading CC, and allegedly shared the money among themselves.
They were arrested between 08 and 09 July 2009 by ACC investigators.
The Namibians are free on bail of N.dollars 50 000 each and Yang is free on bail of N.dollars 1 million.
Advocate Gerson Hinda and Sisa Namandje are defending the three accused.
State advocates Dominic Lisulo and Constance Moyo are representing the State.