15 Jan 2014 13:00pm
WINDHOEK, 15 JAN (NAMPA) - The trial of six people arrested in 2007 for allegedly trying to defraud Alexander Forbes of over N.dollars 3 million will resume in the High Court here on Thursday.
The alleged fraud suspects are Sharon Desiree Raman, 44; Hendrick Francisco Davis (age not provided); Jan Johannes Jansen, 47; Jeremia Metaatu, 41; Iyambo Severen, 35; and the 42-year-old Alta Norman Visser.
The group made a brief appearance before High Court Judge Nate Ndauendapo on Wednesday, when the continuation of their alleged fraud trial was ordered to stand down until Thursday morning at about 11h00 on a request by Deputy Prosecutor-General Dominic Lisulo in order to enable the prosecution team to interview some State witnesses before they give evidence in court.
The trial was postponed as per agreement reached by State representative Lisulo and the accused persons' defence lawyers - Johan van Vuuren, Werner Boesak, Willem Winston and Titus Mbaeva.
All the accused persons denied any involvement in the alleged fraud scam when the trial began on 28 November 2011.
The group also denied any involvement in the alleged fraud case when they each entered not guilty pleas to about 165 main fraud charges and other related alternative charges at the start of their trial which commenced before High Court Judge Nate Ndauendapo in November 2011.
Each of the six accused have also handed in written statements containing not guilty pleas, and distanced themselves from the fraud scam which led to Alexander Forbes losing millions of dollars.
They each entered not guilty pleas in accordance with Section 119 of the Namibian Criminal Procedures' Act, and as per instructions given by their State-sponsored defence lawyers.
Alexander Forbes is one of Namibia's biggest independent pension fund administrators.
According to the evidence contained in the indictment, the six accused persons are facing about 165 main charges of fraud and various alternative charges in that they had allegedly tried to defraud Alexander Forbes of about N.dollars 3,3 million between 2005 and 2007.
Five of the accused are free on bail of between N.dollars 10 000 and N.dollars 25 000 each, except Alta Norman Visser who is free on bail of N.dollars 5 000.
Their bail was granted in 2008 with stringent bail conditions in that they had to hand over all their travelling documents to the police's investigating team.
They were also ordered to report themselves to the Windhoek Police Station twice a week - on Mondays and Fridays between 17h00 and 19h00.
The local defence team is defending the six accused persons on the instructions of the Justice Ministry's Directorate of Legal Aid.
The group was arrested in 2007 by a combined team of City Police and members of the Namibian Police's Serious Crime Unit.