Official in court for illegal land sale

2013-07-19 09:14

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Johannesburg - A City of Johannesburg official and two other people, accused of illegally selling state land in Lenasia, are expected to appear in the Johannesburg Magistrate's Court on Friday.

Gauteng human settlements department spokesperson Motsamai Motlhaolwa said the three allegedly sold land in Lenasia Extension 13 and Extension 4.

"The suspects allegedly defrauded unsuspecting residents of their money by selling them state-owned land," he said.

"The first suspect will appear before the court for allegedly selling four government-owned stands."

Official Sifiso Handsome Litau made his first appearance in March and was released on bail.

He was one of seven people arrested for illegally selling state land. The seven were appearing in different courts for selling stands for between R15 000 and R50 000.

Motlhaolwa said an alleged kingpin was arrested by the Hawks in 2010.

"With the help of our department, the Hawks also arrested an alleged kingpin Richard Zikhali, whose case is being heard at the Johannesburg Specialised Commercial Crimes Court," said Motlhaolwa.

"To date three fraudsters have been found guilty and serving sentences ranging from three to six years in prison. Amongst those found guilty is Pastor Mandla Dlamini, 76, who is serving a three year sentence."

In November, the Gauteng housing department demolished about 50 houses in Lenasia.

The department said it was acting within the law because the houses were illegally built on government land.

The buyers were given forged deeds of sale with the department's logo. Following the bulldozing of houses, Lenasia residents held several protests about the demolitions and blockaded roads leading into Lenasia with rocks and burning tyres.
Read more on:    johannesburg  |  land

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