Thabiso Goba
1 minute read
3 Jun 2022
08:56

No racketeering charge yet for ex-Tongaat Hullet executives

Thabiso Goba

The former Tongaat Hullet executives who are charged with fraud and corruption of R3,5 billion have not yet been charged with racketeering.

The former Tongaat Hullet executives who are charged with fraud and corruption of R3,5 billion have not yet been charged with racketeering.

Peter Staude, former chief executive; Murray Munro, former chief financial officer; Michael Deighton, former managing director; Rory Wilkinson, former finance section head; Kamasagrie Singh, former legal executive, Samantha Shukla, former finance executive and Gavin Kruger, former Deloitte auditor all made their third appearance in the Durban Specialised Commercial Crimes Court on Thursday. 

During their last appearance in April, the matter was postponed for the state to proceed with its application for a racketeering certificate from the National Director of Public Prosecutions. 

However, it emerged in court that a decision on the application has not yet been made. Legal representatives for the accused told the court they would be preparing “on the basis that all investigations are done”.

They also said they would be challenging the racketeering certificate, should it be introduced at a later date. 

Magistrate Garth Davis said these matters will be decided by whichever high court judge will eventually preside over the case. 

Between March 2015 and September 2018, Staude and his co-accused allegedly backdated sale agreements by Tongaat Hullett’s property division, according to Captain Simphiwe Mhlongo, provincial Hawks spokesperson.

Mhlongo said: 

“By doing those incorrect financial reports, they were getting huge bonuses and declaring incorrect profits. The actual loss that was suffered by Tongaat Hulett is R1,5 billion.”

Kruger, who was a registered auditor and engagement partner at Deloitte and Touche was also charged with contravention of the Auditing Professions Act.

The matter was adjourned to July 15 when the state is expected to serve the accused with an indictment. 

The trial is expected to begin in April next year.