Broker has problems with his memory, court hears

2015-04-08 19:28

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Cape Town - A Gordon’s Bay investment broker claiming to have been duped into supporting an alleged fraudulent residential development, has a problem with his memory, a Cape Town court heard on Wednesday.

Broker Chris van Tonder was cross-examined by Bern Rautenbach, for the defence, at the trial of Jacobus Johannes Lambrecht and his son, Simon, who have pleaded not guilty to multiple fraud charges.

Father and son appeared in the Bellville Specialised Commercial Crime Court, before Magistrate Sabrina Sonnenberg.

The defence questioned Van Tonder about why is testimony in court had differed from a sworn statement he had made to the investigating officer, Colonel Ron van Niekerk.

Eventually, prosecutor Jannie Knipe intervened to say that statements made to the police were not meant to cover every aspect of the offences charged.

Asked again why his written statement differed from his testimony in court, Van Tonder said he had a problem with his memory.

He added: “I can’t even remember what I had for dinner last night, nor can I remember names or dates.”

Van Tonder’s wife, Antoinette, had seen an advertisement in the Sunday newspaper, Rapport, placed by the Lambrechts who needed financial support for an upmarket residential development at the top of the Piketberg in the Western Cape.

At a later meeting, Jacobus Lambrecht had assured the Van Tonders that a company the Lambrechts owned was in the process of buying the land for residential development.

He also allegedly assured the Van Tonders that the rezoning of the property, from agricultural to residential, had already been approved.

Van Tonder said he would never have had an interest in the project, had he known that the land had not in fact been sold to the Lambrechts, and that there was no question of rezoning.

Rautenbach put it to Van Tonder: “The two accused never told you that they had bought the land.”

Van Tonder replied: “Why would we then have canvassed investors for project?”

Rautenbach replied: “That you will have to explain to the court yourself.”

The case continues on Thursday.

Read more on:    cape town  |  crime

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