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The Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation, Lieutenant General (DR/Adv.) Godfrey Lebeya outlines and take stock of milestones achieved during the 1st quarter of financial year 2023/2024


Dear South Africans,

Members of the media,

Ladies and Gentlemen, good morning.

Today marks our fifth public update of the successes achieved by the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DPCI), which reflect on the 1st quarter 2023/24 financial year.

As the DPCI we would like to present to the public that our members are hard at work in dealing with national priority offences, which led to the arrest of at least six-hundred and eleven (611) suspects that were successfully secured before the various courts across the country. Two-hundred and twenty-nine (229) accused persons were convicted and sentenced which earned them a title of being a criminal.  Sixteen (16) of the two-hundred and twenty-nine (229) convicts were sentenced for money laundering.

Most of the arrests relates to fraud, which account for two hundred and three (203) suspects, while money laundering amassed forty-eight (48) suspects. Seventy two (72) suspects were equally arrested for narcotics and endangered species. The remaining two hundred and eighty eight (288) suspects were arrested for the other seventeen (17) types of national priority crimes.

During these arrests, the DPCI also seized various exhibits including precious metals and diamonds, endangered species, vehicles, cash, firearms, ammunition, counterfeit goods, explosives and electronic devices worth R 6 112 768 985.00.

The DPCI continues to jointly, respond to those who committed crimes relating to the Covid-19 Relief Fund as coordinated at the Fusion Centre, which is housed at the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC). As at the end of June 2023, 190 suspects were secured before the various courts. Of these, sixty four (64) accused persons were convicted in forty-nine (49) cases. 

Fellow South Africans, in this brief, I shall only highlight thirty (30) cases which represent 4% of these eight hundred and forty (840) successes. Of these 30 cases, 19 are for arrest while 11 are for convictions.

The signing of a new memorandum of understanding between the DPCI and South African Revenue Service (SARS) has bolstered cooperation and collaboration that promotes joint initiatives and effective operational arrangements. This important accord boosts the ability of the country’s law enforcement agencies to enhance corruption, contraventions of tax laws, money laundering and other financial crimes.   Amongst the successes achieved in this quarter, is nineteen (19) arrests and five (5) convictions for tax administration offences. Over and above, five (5) arrests and a conviction were secured for contravention of the Customs and Exercise Act. One case is being cited as an example of these successes.


FREE STATE – Between 2017 and 2019,  Mosebetsi Samuel Mosia (57), a member of Elegant Line Trading 570 CC, misrepresented the facts in the tax returns of the corporation to the SARS which resulted in the latter suffering a loss of  more than R1.2 million.

A case was reported to the Hawks’ Serious Commercial Crime Investigation team based in Bethlehem for further investigation. After securing the attendance of the accused in court, Mosia together with his corporation, Elegant Line Trading 570 CC were found guilty by the Bethlehem Regional Court on 18 April 2023 on eight (8) counts of contravention of the Tax Administration Act 28 of 2011.

Elegant Line Trading 570 CC was sentenced to a fine of R5 million, which is wholly suspended for a period of five years whilst Mosia was sentenced to five years imprisonment, which is suspended for five years. He was further instructed to repay SARS the VAT amount of R372 972.03 on or before 30 September 2023 and further repay SARS income tax of an amount of R853 194.86 on or before 30 September 2023.


EASTERN CAPE: During the period between March 2013 and February 2021, Bathandwa Matikinca, as the administrative and learner support officer at the Coega Development Corporation, used the details of learners that had already exited the training programs and substituted their banking details with his on the payroll system. This was submitted to the external payroll (wage bureaus) service provider used to process the learners’ stipends. The stipends were then paid into various bank accounts, which were held in the name of Matikinca. Intensive investigation discovered that the suspect also paid funds into his wife’s bank account. 

The matter was reported to the Gqeberha based Serious Commercial Crime Investigation team of the Hawks for investigation. Investigations confirmed an actual prejudice of more than R6.6 million to Coega Development Corporation.

Matikinca was arrested on 26 May 2022 and made his first court appearance in Gqeberha Specialised Commercial Crimes Court on 30 May 2022, where he was released on bail. He made a series of court appearances before his conviction on 1 March 2023. 

On 26 May 2023, the Gqeberha Specialised Commercial Crimes Court sentenced Matikinca to ten (10) years imprisonment on charges of fraud and five (5) years for money laundering. The court ordered that the sentences run concurrently.


EASTERN CAPE: In January 2021, Private Security Industry Regulatory Authority (PSIRA) Head Office discovered that an amount of R8 200 which was supposed to be deposited from Mthatha PSIRA office was not reflecting on its bank statement. Upon enquiring from Galela Mdlekeza (51) who was then a team leader in Mthatha office, he could not give any reasonable explanation.  

This triggered an internal investigation, which revealed that between June and November 2021, cash to the value of more than R970 000 which was supposed to be banked by Mdlekeza was never deposited but instead misappropriated. When suspended in November 2021 he resigned in December 2021.

The matter was referred to the Hawks in June 2022 for probing which resulted in Mdlekeza’s apprehension on 7 February 2023.  He appeared in Mthatha Specialised Commercial Crimes Court on the same day and released on R2000 bail.

Mdlekeza appeared in Mthatha Specialised Commercial Crimes court on numerous occasions until his ultimate conviction and sentencing on 31 May 2023 on charges of theft of PSIRA funds and given twelve (12) years direct imprisonment sentence without an option of a fine.


WESTERN CAPE: Between 29 January 2016 and 31 December 2020, Gillian Mary Wileman (56) who was employed as a bookkeeper at Ideal Lighting in George to capture bank statement transactions and administering payments to creditors and suppliers of Ideal Lighting, diverted payments amounting to R7.6 million into her account for personal instead of creditors and suppliers.  

The matter was reported to the Hawks’ Serious Commercial Crime Investigation for further examination, which led to her being summoned to appear in court on the 25 November 2022. 

On Friday, 12 May 2023, Wileman was sentenced by the George Regional Court to fourteen (14) years imprisonment. Six (6) of sentence is suspended for 5 years.  She will serve eight (8) years direct imprisonment.  


GAUTENG: Between 2018 and 2020, an employee of FNB applied through internet for a temporary account executive job at Che Denster company in China. Interview was conducted telephonically and she got the job. After getting the job, an amount of R1.9m was deposited into her First National Bank business account by the company to allegedly buy bitcoin and transfer them into another account at FNB.

A case of fraud was opened at Brooklyn against her. She was dismissed by the bank after disciplinary case for the transaction. The criminal case was investigated by  Warrant Officer Dotrefes Demetrius Visagie (50) of SAPS Brooklyn.

In 2019, Visagie demanded a gratuity amount R3 500-00, R3 000-00, R120 000-00 and 10% and 75% of the R1.9m in return for not arresting her and to withdraw the case against her. At the time, Visagie didn’t know that the FNB employee no longer had the money in her account and her account was also frozen.

The matter was reported to the Hawks Pretoria Serious Corruption Investigation for investigation. On 20 August 2020 where Visagie was caught in the act after demanding an extra 75% of the R1.9m. Visagie who has retired, made his first appearance on 03 August 2020 where he was released on R2 500 bail and made several appearances until he was convicted on four (4) counts of corruption on 13 March 2023.

On 09 May 2023 Visagie was sentenced to four (4) years imprisonment on each of counts 1 to 3 and ten (10) years imprisonment on count 4.  


FREE STATE: During 2016, Sabata Israel Papane (60) was approached by the complainant after the latter developed interest in purchasing an advertised house.  They signed a contract after which the complainant gave him an amount of R100 000-00. When it was time for the complainant to occupy the house, she discovered that the accused had no mandate to sell it.

A case was registered and handed over to the Hawks' Serious Commercial Crime Investigation Unit based in Bloemfontein for further investigation, which resulted in securing the attendance of the accused in court. 

On 9 June 2023, Papane was found guilty by the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court on charges of fraud, money laundering and contravention of the Estate Agency Affairs Act 112 of 1976 and sentenced to twenty three (23) years imprisonment. 


GAUTENG:  Between 2015 and 2018, Carmelia Mngomezulu (52) worked as a Senior Account Executive for a payroll company Inyathi Pty (Ltd). Her duties included  authorising payments of her employers’ clients, the employees’ salaries, repairs and maintenance. Internal audit established that she would occasionally transfer the company’s funds into her personal account and those of her family members. As a result, the company suffered a financial loss of approximately R3.7m.

A case docket was registered and handed over to the Hawks’ Serious Commercial Crime Investigation team based in Johannesburg for further investigation.

On 25 November 2020, Mngomezulu was arrested in Protea Glen, Soweto and later released on R5 000 bail. She made several court appearances at the Specilaised Commercial Crime Court Johannesburg sitting at Palmridge. On 3 May 2023 she was found guilty on seven hundred and sixty-two (762) counts of fraud and sentenced to fifteen (15) years imprisonment.



Trafficking in persons is a modern day slavery and a crime against humanity. South Africa has not been spared this twin-pandemic of trafficking in persons and smuggling of migrants. During this reporting period, seven (7) potential victims of trafficking in persons were rescued, while nine (9) suspects were arrested and two (2) life imprisonment sentences secured. One case is being cited in this regard.


NORTH WEST:  On 20 January 2023, two females aged 20 and 31 were found at the home of Esther Mwanza (41). They alleged to have been trafficked from the Democratic Republic of the Congo to South Africa, where they allegedly endured labour exploitation.

On 2 June 2023, Mwanza (41) was arrested by the Hawks’ Serious Organised Crime Investigation based in Klerksdorp. She made a brief appearance before the Klerksdorp Magistrate’s Court for trafficking in persons.

The victims were interviewed and subsequently taken to a place of safety, which was provided by the Department of Social Development. 

The case is postponed to 19 September 2023.


NORTHERN CAPE: Following a string of hijacking and kidnapping cases that were reported around John Taolo Gaetsewe District during 2019, cases against Katlego Sebolai (32), Keobakile Obuseng (25) and Neo Dikwidi (22) were referred to the Kuruman based Serious Organised Crime Investigation team of Hawks, which conducted thorough investigation.

On 19 May 2023, the Kuruman Magistrate’s court sentenced Sebolai, Obuseng and Dikwidi to a combined total of one hundred and ninety five (195) years imprisonment for kidnapping, hijacking, murder, illegal possession of firearm and ammunition. Each of the trio were as follows: twenty five (25) years for murder, fifteen (15) years for kidnapping, ten (10) years for illegal possession of firearms, and eight (8) years for illegal possession of ammunition, and seven (7) years for hijacking. These sentences will run concurrently and the trio are declared unfit to possess firearms.


NORTHERN CAPE: Between August 2020 and March 2023, a criminal gang from Kimberley was engaged in various criminal activities including murder, attempted murder, possession of unlicensed firearms, insurance fraud, kidnapping, rape, assault, conspiracy to commit murder and contravention of Section 9 of the Prevention of Organised Crime Act (POCA) 121 of 1998 which relates to gang related offences.

On  the 4th and 5th  May 2023, Chane Adams (27), Shawnwin Smith (24), Henry Blom (27), Estee Sade Lawan (24), Vincent Rosen (36), Michael Peters (37), Semone Rose (29), Thabo Sekopano (36), Stephanie Mc Anda (21), Britney Arends (20), Janine Plaatjie (21) and Abigail Van Wyk (23) were simultaneously arrested in Kimberley and Kuruman by a multi-disciplinary team consisting of Hawks Serious Organised Crime Investigation, Serious Commercial Crime Investigation, and Crime Prevention. They are charged together with the main accused Goerge Barnett Peters, accomplices Deon May, Shakireeh Pike, Nico Hofuza, Pameston Mentoor and Tshepo Talimbi, Chinaaz Mentor, and Clive Peters.

During their arrest, mandrax tablets and cash were seized for further investigation with an additional charge of dealing in drugs. The accused made a brief first appearance in the Kimberley Magistrate Court on 5 May 2023 facing numerous charges of aiding and abetting of a criminal gang activities, murder, attempted murder, possession of unlicensed firearm, insurance fraud, kidnapping, rape, assault, conspiracy to commit murder and contravention of Section 9 Act 121 of 1998 Gang related offenses.

The case was postponed to Wednesday, 15 September 2023 for continuation of bail application. 


A total number of forty eight (48) suspects were arrested on drug related charges. The majority of these suspects were arrested by the South African Narcotics Enforcement Bureau (SANEB) within the Component Serious Organised Crime Investigation (SOCI) of the DPCI.  Drugs valued at an amount of R 3 642 641 782, 41 were seized and five (5) Drug Laboratories in Gauteng, North West, and Western Cape were dismantled.


PRETORIA: On 11 May 2023, the South African Narcotics Enforcement Bureau (SANEB) of the Hawks based in Western Cape in collaboration with Crime Intelligence (CI) and Special Task Force (STF) pounced on Keorapetse Elias Motsepe (38) and Mzingisi Mokoloda (73) operating a fully functional clandestine laboratory in the rural Mogale City, Magaliesburg. 

The team executed a search and seizure warrant (J51) following an intensive investigation into the drug supply flowing into the Western Cape. During the search, the police found mandrax paste, mandrax tablets, mandrax press machine, oven to dry methaqualone, buckets of methaqualone, and drums of powder used in the manufacturing of mandrax of an estimated R150 million.

Motsepe was later released on R20 000 bail whilst Mokoloda was remanded in custody after his bail application was denied.

The case was postponed for further investigation and the duo will appear in Krugersdorp Magistrate court on the 19 October 2023 on charges of dealing in drugs and contravening the Drugs and Drug Trafficking Act 140 of 1992.


Cash-in transit heists continue to be a thorn in the Economy of the country and the DPCI in collaboration with private organisations such as CITASA continue to strengthen the fight against these crimes. For this reporting period a total of twenty seven (27) arrests and six (6) convictions who share sentences of one hundred and twenty one (121) years of imprisonment. A further twenty three (23) CIT related offences including the Sebokeng gun-battle find expression.


FREE STATE:  On 09 May 2023, an armoured vehicle of Fidelity security was on its way from the depot to Bloemfontein Central Business District to deliver cash. Before the security officials reached their destination, it is alleged that they were accosted by a group of heavily armed suspects at McKenzie Street, East End in Bloemfontein. The armed robbers instructed the security officials to get out of the vehicle then blew the vault and the drop safe open.

The suspects fled the scene with an undisclosed amount of money and three firearms from the security officials.

On 10 May 2023, the Hawks’ Serious Organised Crime Investigation team based in Bloemfontein arrested three Fidelity security officials Mzwandile Choko (60), Molefe Sidwell Molefe (61), and Deon de Lange (48) for their involvement in the robbery.   

Molefe and De Lange were released on a warning while Choko is still in custody. The case has been remanded to 13 September 2023.


WESTERN CAPE:  On 07 September 2014, Coin security personnel collected money at Harare Spar in Khayelitsha.  Seven (7) suspects robbed one official of his firearm. In the process, a shootout ensued where a crewman was wounded. No money was taken. The suspects fled the scene. One (1) 9 mm pistol, belonging to one of the suspects was recovered at the crime scene as well as four (4) R5 cartridges and five (5) 9mm cartridges. The matter was allocated to the DPCI. Telford Gosa (38) and Lunga Mvinjelwa (39) were arrested.

On 11 April 2023, the duo were convicted and sentenced on 20 April 2023 by the Khayelitsha Regional Court for an attempted cash in transit robbery as well as attempted murder.

Gosa was sentenced to ten (10) years imprisonment of which four (4) years is suspended for attempted armed robbery, and five (5) years imprisonment for attempted murder. Mvinjelwa was sentenced to twelve (12) years imprisonment of which four (4) years is suspended for attempted armed robbery, and five (5) years imprisonment for attempted murder. The sentences runs concurrently, Effectively, Gosa will serve six (6) years imprisonment whereas Mvinjelwa will serve eight (8) years imprisonment.


Attacks on police officials are an attack to the state, and the death of one police official, is one too many. Dear South Africans, for the 1st quarter only, we noted with concern that thirty one 31 (11 on-duty 20 off-duty) police officials were killed in 30 incidents. During the same period, twenty four (24) arrests were made. A total number of nine (9) convictions were secured on murder of police officials, eight (8) of which share nine (9) life term imprisonment and a combined period of more than one hundred (100) years imprisonment. The nine lifers are: Ntuthuko Dalingcebo Mabaso (29), Nkosikhona Simphiwe Luthuli (29), Kusakwendoda Simplex Luthuli (43), Thabang Motaung (42), Hlabirwa Rassie Nkune (37), Arkim Phathisani Masuku (32), Sithembiso Andile Mbona (27), Saziso Trevor Khambule (26). The ninth criminal Nhlakanipho Ndovela (25) received 30 years imprisonment. This financial year is going to be higher than last year where we secured nine life imprisonment. 

Some of the successes includes but limited to the following two cases:


KWAZULU-NATAL: On 4 May 2021 at about 22:00, Sergeant Sibongile Mbanjwa of Phoenix detectives was fatally wounded in the state vehicle when attacked with his colleague in the vehicle. 

A case of murder, attempted murder and robbery was reported at Verulam police station. It was allocated to the Hawks members from Durban Serious Organised Crime Investigation. Two weeks later, Nkosikhona Luthuli (28) and Kusakwendoda Luthuli (42) were arrested. They appeared in court several times and their bail was successfully opposed.

On 21 April 2023, Verulam Regional Court convicted and sentenced both accused to life imprisonment for murder, five (5) years imprisonment for attempted murder and five (5) years imprisonment for robbery. 


NORTH WEST: On 30 November 2020, a business robbery occurred in Marikana. Whilst members of Marikana Crime Prevention were following up on leads regarding the robbery, they spotted Thabo Motaung (40), an illegal migrant and others at an informal settlement. When they approached the group, they were met with gunfire. A shootout ensued resulting in the death of a police official. Motaung was arrested and a pistol and ammunition was seized.

The matter was taken over by the Hawks and the accused made his first appearance on 08 December 2020, before the Tlhabane Magistrate’s Court where he was remanded in custody until his conviction.

On 17 April 2023, Motaung was sentenced to life imprisonment for murder, seven (7) years imprisonment for unlawful possession of a firearm, five (5) years imprisonment for unlawful possession of ammunition, two (2) years imprisonment for discharging a firearm and twelve (12) months imprisonment for being an illegal immigrant.



South Africa is home to nearly 10% of the world`s plants and 7% of the world`s reptiles, birds and mammals. Due to the abundance of our natural resources, we are targeted by unscrupulous people who illegally kill and traffic wildlife species for financial gain. I provide an example of such an incident where 16 suspects were arrested during a takedown operation” Blood Orange”.


MPUMALANGA:  On 03 June 2023 the attendance of sixteen (16) suspects, Francis Kipampa, Martin Lekhuleni, Eunice Lekhuleni, Sipho Nyundu, Solly Ubisi, Agina Mkhonto, Thandy Makhuvele, Ignatia Mnisi, Given Mzima, Daniel Maluleke, Joyce Maluleke, Nkateko Maluleke, Otters Maluleke, Miyelani Maluleke, Khensani Maluleke and Stephilina Mbhombi appeared in the Nelspruit Commercial Crimes Court on charges of money laundering, corruption, conspiracy to commit crime, contraventions of the National Environmental Management  Biodiversity Act (NEMBA) 10 of 2004 relating to dealing in rhino horns. This was conducted under Operation called “Blood Orange” that happened in Mpumalanga and Gauteng and Limpopo provinces.  

The case is postponed to 25 October 2023 for final auditors' report and pre- trial conference.



MPUMALANGA: Between the 18 July 2022 and 04 April 2023, the Nelspruit based Hawks’ Serious Commercial Crime Investigation and the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC), and other entities arrested the suspects for fraud, theft and money laundering.

On 04 April 2023, Demieties Peter Botes (47) who is the owner of a fleet of 45 trucks was secured before the Nelspruit Magistrates Court for alleged fraud. It is alleged that he registered fleet of vehicles without paying licence fees which resulted in the loss of R60m. He appeared alongside Thembi Millicent Motlohi (43), Allman Thabani Masuku (35), Xoliswa Celia Ngcelwane (52), Nompulelo Winnie Nxumalo (44), Agnes Nosipho Ndzinisa (54), Nkosinathi Samuel Gumede (37), Thabang Cliford Khumalo (41), Nonhlanhla Precious Matsheka (42) and Nkosinathi Mahlalela (36).

The eighteenth accused, Morris Robert Shabalala (59) was arrested on 25 July 2023 while the nineteenth and last accused, Godgift Ngcina Ngcamphalala (53) was arrested on 26 July 2023, which are outside the quarter under review. They were each granted R15 000 bail. The case is postponed to 25 October 2023 for disclosure in the Nelspruit Specialised Commercial Crimes court.


WESTERN CAPE: Between March 2009 and August 2013, Luvuyo Lennox Ngubelanga (55) (former CEO), Elliot Dyabaza (51), Prudence Dingiswayo (46), Patrick Mcedisi Mbebe (57), Peter Johannes Sam (52), Andreas Khulekani Ngubeni (53), Nomathamsanqa Maude Msizi (39) and Shamrack Njozela (60) who were employees and contractors of the South Cape College colluded to submit non-compliance bid documents and quotations for the construction and renovations colleges in the District.

This resulted in prejudice and a loss to the South Cape TVET College to the amount over R24 million. The investigation findings then led to the matter being reported to the Hawks’ in 2014 by the Department of Higher Education after it was established by the college that the funds meant for the construction of the college were used by the suspects to enrich themselves.

Further investigation revealed that the CEO influenced other officials to deviate from the tender process in order for the scheme to benefit the involved entities. Some of the employees were directors or members of certain entities and never disclosed that they were involved directly or indirectly.

On 13 April 2023, the Hawks’ Serious Commercial Crime Investigation team in George together with Public Order Policing (POPS) arrested the suspects on warrants of arrest in connection with theft of funds from the South Cape Technical and Vocational Education and Training College (TVET). On 10 May 2023, the 9th suspect, Zukiswa Monica Ziqu (54) who was the Chief Financial Officer was arrested.

The suspects were charged with corruption, sixteen counts of fraud alternatively theft.  Eight (8) accused made their first appearance at George magistrate court the day of their arrest and were released on bail ranging from R2 000 to R5 000. On 11 May 2023 the 9th outstanding suspect, Zukiswa Monica Ziqu (54) who was the Chief Financial Officer appeared in the George Magistrate Court and released on a R5 000 bail. The matter is remanded to 08 November 2023 for further particulars.


LIMPOPO: On 24 April 2022, a foreign national who is a businessman died in a motorcar accident based in South Africa. On 25 April 2022, Thabiso Matenda (29) who is an employee at First National Bank (FNB) Makhado, opened a profile of the deceased client without any authorization and stole R36 989 052-67. The stolen funds were transferred into the new different bank accounts that were created.

A case of theft was opened and assigned to the Serious Commercial Crime Investigation of the Hawks based in Polokwane.

On Monday 29 May 2023, a simultaneous take down operation was embarked upon Gauteng, Kwazulu-Natal, Northern Cape and Limpopo. The first accused person to be arrested in this case was the First National Bank (FNB) employee based in Makhado, Thabiso Matenda (29). The Eighteen (18) suspects, Moses Banda (48) who is the suspected mastermind and Nomaphelo Sethi (28), Rody Martial Nzeya (43), Ahmed Ishtiaq (49), Ali Qasim (34), Tinyiko Baloyi (43), Mohammad Faisal (44), Aleina Gondo (45), Zakie Hossain (44), Shamaila Ishtiaaq (45), Sesana Khoza ( 48), Prince Madondo (47), Dola Mahmud (29), Thabiso Matenda (28),  Sergeant Azwitakadzi Matodzi (45) of SAPS Makhado, Collance Mgiba (49) Matimba Nyamdane (35) Godwin Pamire (41) have been arrested.

The case is postponed to 16 October 2023 in the Polokwane Specialised Commercial Crimes Court.


NORTHERN CAPE: During 2003, the Northern Cape Department of Health together with the Department of Roads and Public Works, embarked on a project to construct a new Mental Health Facility in Kimberley. The original contract was to an amount of two hundred and ninety million rand (R290 million).

It is alleged that some of the constructed buildings faces possible demolition after four hundred and twenty million rand (R420 million) was paid to a liquidated contractor. It was discovered that the company that was appointed did not have the capacity to render the service and the contract was terminated whilst money was already paid.  The work on the project has since been halted, leaving the facility incomplete and unusable, and at a considerable cost to the Department of Health. Officials did not follow normal procurement procedures when appointing the consultant. 

On the 23 May 2023, Patience Mokhali (65) who is the former Head of Department for Roads and Public Works and Tshegolekae Motaung (59) who is a Director of Babereki Consulting Engineers were secured before the Upington Magistrates’ court by the Serious Corruption Investigation team of the Hawks in Kimberley. On 30 May 2023, the former MEC of Transport, Roads and Public Works, in the Northern Cape, Mr John Block (55) was also secured before the same court. They are charged with contravention of Public Finance Management Act (PFMA), fraud, corruption and money laundering. 

Both accused are out on bail and the case is postponed to the 05 October 2023 for disclosure.


NORTHERN CAPE: Between 1st and 3rd March 2023, three Bangladesh nationals namely, Aminul Islam (39), Ullah Foji (36) and Akter Atika (23) tampered with the drop-safe used at their shop. They allegedly dropped an amount of R707 040-00 repeatedly thereby making their drop safe app account linked to the safe to be credited with approximately R11 million. A total amount of R11 million rand was immediately transferred to different bank accounts locally and offshore.

Irregular activities of the safe were detected and reported to the Serious Commercial Crime Investigation of the Hawks of Kimberley. On 3 March 2023 the trio were traced at Kimberley Airport where they were about to board a flight to Johannesburg with their final destination being Dubai/Dhaka as per their airline tickets. They were searched and an amount of R23 000-00 cash was found in their possession which was seized. The trio are charged with Fraud and Money Laundering. The State has successfully opposed numerous bail applications.

Further investigation by the DPCI’s Serious Commercial Crime Investigation team assisted by the Priority Crime Specialised Investigation team resulted in the recovery of an amount exceeding R4 million.  

The matter is remanded to 05 September 2023 for decision of formal bail application.


GAUTENG: On 16 May 2023 Louis Tshakoane (74) and Louis Tshakoane junior (34) were arrested by the Hawks’ Serious Commercial Crime Investigation based in Johannesburg assisted by Gauteng Traffic SLEU, Ekurhuleni Metro Police CLU and Crime Intelligence at the funeral and residence respectively. On 17 May 2023, Suzan Tshakoane (59) handed herself over to the Hawks.   

They are alleged to have participated in the presentations aimed at enticing potential investors with a promise of high returns from the proceeds of the unregistered investment company known as Undercover Billionaires.  The amount of investments tendered is approximately R100 million. 

 Shakoane junior was first arrested in 2019 where he was granted bail of R70 000. The accused then made a series of appearances but later absconded. His arrest was as a result of a bench warrant for which he forfeited his bail.

The trio appeared in the Palm Ridge Specialised Commercial Crimes Court, 17 May 2023 on charges of fraud, theft, money laundering and contravention of the Financial Advisory and Intermediary Services Act. Tshakoane senior and his wife were released on R70 000 and R50 000 respectively, whilst the junior was remanded in custody.

The case is postponed to 23 October 2023.


A total number of sixty seven (67) Freezing and Forfeiture Orders were granted with

a monetary value of R183 980 568, 34. A total of forty six (46) Preservation Orders

with a monetary value of R 27 676 291, 24, seventeen (17) Forfeiture Orders with a

monetary value of R 6 330 386, 50; three (3) Confiscation Orders with a monetary

value of R 563 948, 67 and one (1) Restraint Order with a monetary value of R 149

409 941, 93 was granted in the 1st quarter of 2023/2024 of the financial year.

This is kind of work that contributes to Criminal Assets Recovery Account (CARA) funds.


EASTERN CAPE: In 2013, Amathole District Municipality embarked on a project Accelerated Sanitation Programme where 66 700 ventilated improved pit (VIP) toilets in various villages were to be erected. An amount of R631 million was allocated for the project and Siyenza Group was appointed to execute.

After the payment of the first trench, National Treasury lodged a complaint that the company Siyenza Group submitted two false tax certificates prior to the awarding of the tender.  Investigations ensued and the money to the value of more than R149 million was traced to a number of beneficiaries’ accounts besides the R16 million house which was bought by the director of Siyenza Group using the funds acquired for the project.

On 22 November 2019, the accused Ntsokolo Chris Magwangqana (64), Nkosinathi Rooseveld Soga (62), Mpumelelo Vincent Shezi (45), Lulama Taleni (45), Ongama Mahlawe (55), Goodman Ntandazo Vimba (46), Bongani Mpeluza (50), Eddison Vuyani Gaga (37), Hellen Busisiwe Kwinana-Boadi (54) and Lovemore Khativhu (41) were arrested and released on bail.

The matter is currently on the roll at the Eastern Cape High Court sitting at Makhanda and it is postponed to 20 September 2023 for the outcome of the representations to the National Director of Public Prosecution (NDPP).

The money and the house were confiscated and a provisional restraint order was granted on 2 December 2019. On 16 May 2023, Eastern Cape High Court confirmed the R165 million worth restraining order against Amathole District Municipality officials, directors of businesses and their businesses who are charged with fraud, corruption, money laundering, assisting another to benefit  from proceeds of unlawful activities and contravention of the Municipal Finance Management Act (MFMA).


GAUTENG: On 31 December 2022, Transnet officials with the assistance of Bidvest security responded to an incident of possible damage to essential infrastructure and theft of fuel from the Transnet fuel pipeline between Watloo and Kendal in Silverton.

A leaking Mercedes Benz hauling a tanker with fuel suspected to have been stolen from a Transnet fuel pipeline was seen in the area. Attempts were made to stop the truck and when it eventually stopped the driver who is Shady Mhlanga (44), from Zimbabwe, jumped out to hide in an effort to evade arrest. He was tracked down, arrested and a truck valued at R602 000.00 was seized.

Mhlanga remains in custody as his bail was successfully opposed. He will be back in the Pretoria Regional Court on 03 October 2023.

On 31 May 2023, the PCSI of the Hawks in Gauteng working with the Asset Forfeiture Unit (AFU) of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) successfully secured a preservation order awarded by the Pretoria High Court.



FREE STATE: In 2022, A Cash-In-Transit (CIT) robbery took place in Sasolburg. Members of the public help themselves by stealing the cash that was scattered around the scene of crime. Fortunately, the members of the police based at Kroonstad K9 Unit and Zamdela SAPS, stopped the stealing and seized the cash from the thieving members of the public. However, instead of registering the money in the exhibit register at the police station, the money was allegedly pocketed by the members.

A case docket was opened against the members and referred to the Serious Corruption Investigation Unit of the Hawks based at Welkom for investigation. After a thorough investigation by the team, warrants for their arrest were issued.

On 29 June 2023, the warrants were executed and the five police officials, Sello Edward Moopela (50), Solomon Ramoisa Rasentsoere (42), Petrus Zwelonakele Mphethu (42), Morena Caroll Semase (38), and Seponono Benedict Mohoang (40) were arrested.

The suspects appeared before a Sasolburg Magistrate’s Court on 30 June 2023 facing charges of theft, defeating the ends of justice, and money laundering. The accused are out on R2 000 bail each. Matter is postponed to 05 September 2023.


GAUTENG: In September 2019, a complainant who is a suspect in a fraud matter worth more than R86 million, reported to the police that she was approached by an attorney, Stephen Mangolela (53) who promised to assist her with the withdrawal of the charges against her, on condition that she pays him an amount of R550 000.

The money required was paid in three trenches. The attorney is alleged to have given her a letter purported to be from the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) confirming that the prosecutor declined to prosecute on her matter and that the charges have been withdrawn.

She opened the case upon discovering that the case was not withdrawn and that the letter from the NPA is not authentic. The docket was assigned to the Johannesburg based Hawks’ Serious Corruption Investigation team for probing. After conclusion of investigation, a warrant of arrest was issued.

On 19 June 2023, Mangolela was arrested whilst at the Randburg Regional Court and appeared in court on charges of corruption, fraud and forgery and extortion.  Case is postponed to the 04 October 2023.


FREE STATE: During 2020, a municipal infrastructure grant was allocated to Dihlabeng Local Municipality for upgrading of Fouriesburg pump station. It is alleged that Ntokozo Shabalala, the former director of Infrastructure and Development, appointed the service providers, Pump Group SA, Turbo Tech, and Toboza and Nakeni engineers without following the tender processes. The service providers submitted invoices for the services that were not rendered. As a result, the municipality suffered an actual prejudice of more than R9 million.

On 01 June 2023, Ntokozo Shabalala (41), Mokgeseng Johannes Lesibe (48), Broody Fezile Thoboza (42), Isaac Moreki Mosenohi (36), and Sabata Mofokeng (50) appeared before the Fouriesburg Magistrates’ Court on charges of fraud, forgery and uttering. The case against the accused was remanded to 19 June 2023 for appearance in Bethlehem Commercial Crimes Court where they were released on R5 000 bail each.

The case is postponed to 26 October 2023.


NORTH WEST: On 01 April 2016, Thabang Selemale (53) secured employment as a Financial Manager at the North West Provincial Treasury using fraudulent documents, including his wife’s identity document (ID) where he replaced the photograph of his wife, with his own. He allegedly further used the names of his wife in the application.  After the appointment, the persal system could not authorise the allocation of a persal number because his ID number was incorrect.

An internal investigation was initiated. During the process, it transpired that Selemale subsequently submitted two false affidavits stating that he lost his ID and drivers licence and he has applied to Home Affairs to have them re-issued and corrected.

However, he allegedly absconded from the Department when he was due to undergo a disciplinary hearing. It would appear that the judgement given in favour of the SARS for over R200 000 may have discouraged him to use his own name.

Thabang Selemale (53) appeared before the Mmabatho Magistrates’ Court on 13 April 2023 following his arrest by the Hawks’ Serious Commercial Crime Investigation on Wednesday, 12 April 2023 in Pretoria for fraud.  He was released on R2 000 bail.

The matter was postponed to 21 September 2023.


NORTH WEST: Between 2019 and 2020, two former employees of the Department of Employment and Labour in the North West Provincial Government at the Mahikeng and Klerksdorp offices, and four recruiting agents allegedly recruited unemployed individuals under various false pretences. Claimants were informed that they were being assisted to lodge claims from the Drought Relief Fund, while others were allegedly claiming money from UIF. Others were informed that they would be employed at SARS, while others were informed that they would be employed at Nomalalemba Project and other projects.

The claimants were allegedly each given R50 to open bank accounts. The bank cards were kept by the suspects. In addition, the claimants were made to complete UIF claim forms masquerading as former employees of Impala Platinum mine and Sibanye Ashanti Gold mine. Subsequently, the suspects processed their claims, resulting in the Department of Employment and Labour suffering a loss of over R2-million.

On 10 June 2023, Daniel Matshogo (42), Zakaria Modise Mokgobi (42), Thato Moiloa (26), Motlapele Otto (58), Theophilus Mpheng (39), Tebogo Joseph Mosito (36) and Vusi Mukhubo (41) were arrested in Mahikeng by the Hawks’ Serious Commercial Crime Investigation and the Priority Crime Specialised Investigation unit for alleged fraudulent claims from the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF). The seven made their first appearance before Mahikeng District Court on 12 June 2023, where they faced charges of fraud, money laundering and theft.

The case is postponed to 21 September 2023.


NORTH WEST: In October 2015, Caswell Mthombeni (52) was appointed by the Department of Community Safety and Transport Management in the North West province to help the department in achieving its road safety objectives, which included training of unemployed matriculants and empowering of accredited driving schools in various areas. His duties included training and developing driving schools and learner drivers.

An amount of over R21 million was paid to Mthombeni for the commencement of the programme. Over 40 driving schools allegedly signed contracts with the Mthombeni’s company, as beneficiaries of the programme. It is further alleged that these driving schools used their funds to participate in the programme, in anticipation that Mthombeni will compensate them. Mthombeni allegedly failed to honour his contractual agreement with the driving schools and spent the money on himself. As a result, the department incurred losses to the tune of over R21 million.

On 26 June 2023, Mthombeni was arrested by the Hawks’ Serious Corruption Investigation (SCI) assisted by the Priority Crime Specialised Investigation (PSCI) and Tactical Operations Management Section (TOMS) in Pretoria.  He appeared in the Mahikeng Magistrates’ Court on 27 June 2023, facing charges of fraud and money laundering where he was granted R50 000.00. The matter is postponed to 19 September 2023.

In conclusion, allow me to repeat that the DPCI shall at all times enforce the law of the Republic without fear, favour or prejudice. I thank you!!!