‘Home Affairs must explain how Krecjcir employee got SA ID’

2013-11-19 16:02

The state has demanded answers from the home affairs department on how fraud-accused Bulgarian national Ivan Savov secured a South African identity document (ID).

“Home Affairs must explain how Savov obtained a South African identity document and ... how he came into the country, and his movements inside the country,” prosecutor Richard Tshabalala told the Johannesburg Specialised Commercial Crime Court today.

Defence attorney Piet du Plessis said the matter had been investigated since February, and the state should therefore be aware of Savov’s status in the country.

“His status has not yet been confirmed by the police. They only went to Home Affairs yesterday. The state has had ample time. This is not a situation that can continue,” said Du Plessis.

The matter was postponed to Friday because the magistrate was ill.

The defence asked the state to let all parties know whether the magistrate would be back then. If the magistrate was still not well, arrangements should be made for another presiding officer to deal with the bail application, said Du Plessis. He urged the state to be ready on Friday.

Savov is a manager at Czech fugitive Radovan Krejcir’s Money Point business in Bedfordview on the East Rand. He is accused, along with Absa bank employee Voyolwethu Koboka, of fraud and money laundering.

Savov was arrested at the Money Point business last Thursday.

According to the draft charge sheet, Koboka allegedly made unauthorised transfers amounting to R12 million between January 26 and February 2 from an account held by Bloemfontein Correctional Contracts (Pty).

The money was allegedly transferred to an attorney’s account before being moved into Savov’s bank account.

Koboka was not in court today as his case would be heard later.

Du Plessis said Savov had filed an affidavit and the investigating team would have had enough time to study it. The affidavit had not yet been presented to court.

At Friday’s hearing, the court asked for a Bulgarian interpreter.

The defence today asked that Savov be detained at Johannesburg Central Police Station. The state had no objection provided permission was obtained from the station commander.

Last Tuesday, two people were killed and five others injured in an explosion at the Money Point premises. The charges against Savov and Koboka were not related to the blast.

In July, Krejcir was the target of an apparent assassination attempt outside Money Point. Moments after he got out of his car, a remote-controlled gun installed behind the number plate of a car parked near his was fired at him. Krejcir escaped unharmed.

About three weeks earlier, Krejcir’s Bedfordview business was broken into and jewellery worth R3 million was stolen.

Krejcir is due back in the Kempton Park Magistrates’ Court on December 9 for his extradition case. Magistrate William Schutte would assess progress made in Krejcir’s bid for asylum, currently with the Refugee Appeal Board.

Krejcir was sentenced in the Czech Republic last year after being convicted in absentia of money laundering. He would face an 11-year sentence if extradited.

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