Fraudster dentists’ case postponed

2012-02-10 14:36

The case against a Mpumalanga dentist who defrauded Sasol medical scheme (Sasolmed) of R387 350 was postponed in Pretoria today.

The Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA) which has brought charges of unprofessional conduct against Dr Sarel Jacobus van Zyl postponed his hearing after it emerged that he had not been briefed about the medical regulations he had allegedly contravened and the charges against him.

Chairperson of the committee Pule Maoka said: “It would be unfair to ask Van Zyl to plead as he had not been given an opportunity to understand the regulations he contravened.”

The committee ordered the prosecution to have a pre-trial conference with Van Zyl today to ensure that he understands the charges brought against him before he returns to face the music on March 3.

Van Zyl (55) was convicted of 1 947 counts of fraud relating to medical aid claims by the Pretoria Specialised Commercial Crimes Court in 2009. He submitted fraudulent claims to the scheme between 2004 and 2005.

He was sentenced to two years’ imprisonment or a fine of R200 000 and he settled for the latter.

The matter was then referred to the HPCSA for disciplinary action. But due to a backlog, Van Zyl’s hearing, scheduled for December last year, was postponed to this week because he didn’t have legal representation.

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