NPA to relook at Mpisane case

By Drum Digital
17 January 2014

The NPA will examine the State's decision to withdraw corruption and fraud charges against Durban businesswoman Shauwn Mpisane, it said on Thursday.

The NPA will examine the State's decision to withdraw corruption and fraud charges against Durban businesswoman Shauwn Mpisane, it said.

"National Director of Public Prosecutions [NDPP] Mxolisi Nxasana instructed the head of the special commercial crimes unit to submit a detailed report for his consideration with the view to establish whether the reasons for the withdrawal warrant his intervention in a form of a review or not," said National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Nathi Mncube.

Mpisane faced more than 50 charges of fraud, forgery, and uttering of a forged document.

She was accused of submitting forged documents to obtain Construction Industry Development Board gradings, which were then used to win five public works department tenders worth R140m.

The State dropped charges against Mpisane on Wednesday in the Durban Commercial Crimes Court.

KwaZulu-Natal NPA spokesperson Natasha Ramkisson-Kara said the withdrawal was because the State could not submit a forensic investigation report to the court by Wednesday afternoon.

Mncube said Nxasana had noted the public's outrage at the State's decision to withdraw the criminal case.

"The NPA will inform the public on the next course of action in this matter once the NDPP has applied his mind on the matter," he said.

The report by the special commercial crimes unit was expected to reach the NDPP's office on Monday.

Mpisane still faces charges in two other cases. In the Durban Regional Court she is accused of inflating invoices of her business - Zikhulise Cleaning, Maintenance, and Transport - by almost R5m to cut her tax bill.

In the Pinetown Magistrate's Court she stands accused of interfering with a State witness related to the tax fraud case.

The lead prosecutor in those two cases has been removed and the NDPP will inform the courts on 31 January whether the cases will proceed following representations by Mpisane's lawyers about the prosecution's conduct.

Mpisane's legal team has accused the prosecution of suppressing evidence.

- SAPA

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