Citizen Reporter
1 minute read
25 Mar 2020
12:35 pm

Law firm secretary in court for allegedly siphoning over R12m from trust funds

Citizen Reporter

The police say half of the funds were recovered and paid back into the trust fund.

Picture: iStock

A suspect who worked as a secretary in “one of the well-established” law firms in Stellenbosch appeared at the Bellville Commercial Crimes Court on Tuesday for allegedly transferring “trust funds” amounting to R12 million “to various accounts”.

The South African Police Service (SAPS) said the 48-year-old secretary, Alwena Smith, appeared in court alongside Sean Desmond Smith, 51, and Elviolynn Dreyer, 31.

“It is alleged that Alwena Smith, who worked as a secretary in one of the well-established attorney’s practices in Stellenbosch, unlawfully transferred trust funds to various accounts between January 2016 and April 2018.  She allegedly amassed over R12 million in her alleged illegal dealings from the law firm she worked for, of which half of the funds were recovered and paid back into the trust fund.

“The Hawks Serious Commercial Crime investigation team allegedly linked the bank accounts to her husband, Sean Desmond and daughter, Elviolynn. The case against the trio was postponed to the 17 April 2020 for further investigation whilst they were each released on R3,000 bail with stringent bail conditions.”

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