'Robin Hood' jailed for 30 years for stealing over R10m

2015-11-17 22:12
(AP)

(AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Mbombela - Mpumalanga's self-confessed Robin Hood has been handed a hefty 30-year imprisonment sentence for stealing more than R10m from his employers and attempting to kill an accountant.

Wade Morgan Williams, 30, was sentenced when he appeared in the Nelspruit Regional Court on Tuesday.

He was arrested on April 4 this year while driving a Discovery 4 he had stolen from the world-famous Londolozi Game Reserve.

During his arrest on the Riverside R40 route in Mbombela, police confiscated cash, a computer and the vehicle in his possession.

He pleaded guilty to six charges including theft, attempted murder, kidnapping, vehicle theft, arson and malicious damage to property.

On Tuesday, he said his acts were justified.

"I stole the money to distribute to the [Londolozi] labourers as they earn very little. The economic system in this country favours a few individuals while the majority are suffering," Williams told the court.

He said the Londolozi employees had no land rights and lived in unfinished houses.

"Clean water is scarce, while the company controls large amounts of water. I'm tired of watching people living under these difficult circumstances. Our government is failing to provide infrastructure and services. A total of 21% of orphans live on the streets. Good people and non-government organisations stand by and are doing nothing," he said.

The accused said his intention was to transfer the money to the accounts of the suffering. He did not mean to hurt anyone, but to address the imbalances in society.

‘A fallen angel’

Senior State prosecutor Isbet Erwee said the accused's story was not credible.

"The accused did not plan to be any Robin Hood, but was a fallen angel with a year of planning in advance to commit the crimes. He planned the offences as early as 2013. He applied for a firearm, had weaponry in his rented place, a lock picking tool, a samurai sword, a dagger with blades and a bow and arrows. He opened a bank account at Absa and other accounts where he had transferred the money," Erwee said.

She said Williams kidnapped colleague Dave Damper, handcuffed him and injected him with alcohol.

"He planned to kill the victim and throw his body in a crocodile-infested dam... He is a violent person and a danger to society," she said.

Magistrate André Geldenhuys said Londolozi had been contributing to the community for 35 years.

"You did not think as an intelligent man and if you did, you could have made a contribution to the community. You were driven by greed and insecurity... Your intentions were never to distribute the [money] to the poor. Your intention was to wipe clear all evidence, to an extent destroy the company and to flee the country eventually," Geldenhuys said.

He sentenced Williams to 15 years for theft, 10 years for attempted murder, five years for kidnapping, eight years for vehicle theft, five years for arson and five years for malicious damage to property with several of the sentences running concurrently. The sentence translated to an effective 30 years in prison.

Read more on:    mbombela  |  crime

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

 
PARTNER CONTENT
INFOGRAPHIC: New thinking required for retirement

Everything we believe about retirement is fast becoming outdated.

PARTNER CONTENT
WATCH: How education can change a life

A university education gives students the chance to create a better future for themselves, their families and to opportunity achieve their dreams.

/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.