‘Fake prosecutor’: cases flood in after suspect’s arrest

2010-10-27 00:00

SINCE The Witness publicised the arrest of Sukana Montague (43) on charges of extortion and corruption, police have received about 200 calls detailing similar complaints against her.

This was said by investigating officer Sergeant Rajeev Soorajbally, who opposed the granting of bail to Montague yesterday.

Magistrate Amanda Bezuidenhout postponed the case until Monday to give the prosecution time to consider whether to call more witnesses.

The prosecution is also waiting for a report from Correctional Services as to whether it would be possible to monitor Montague on bail.

Soorajbally expressed fears that if Montague is released on bail, she would pose a flight risk, would hamper the investigation, destroy evidence, and/or interfere with witnesses.

He said he is investigating many possible charges against her and that a further seven cases could be added within the next week.

He believed the case against her is “fairly strong”.

Soorajbally said he has received close to 200 calls in which the complainants alleged that she had taken money after promising “certain things” which did not materialise.

He said the landlord of the flat where she lives is trying to terminate her lease and have her evicted.

She allegedly threatened her landlord who has opened a case of a “bomb threat” against her.

Soorajbally said Montague claims to be self-employed as a financial advisor.

However, her offices in Timber Street do not have the appearance of a “professional” office, he said.

He also revealed that another person is suspected of being involved in the crimes.

Replying to questions by Montague’s lawyer, Kameel Jagernath, the police officer said he does not know if Montague has a passport, but said this was not necessary for her to leave the country without a trace.

Jagernath said Montague was convicted in of fraud in 2005, for which she was sentenced to two years under correctional supervision.

Her husband, a police officer, is currently suspended pending a departmental hearing and she is the family’s sole breadwinner.

She has two children, aged 18 months and 15 years old.

Montague is charged with corruption and extortion for allegedly promising Rajeshree David — mother of convicted murderer Kalisha Rajcoomar — that she could have her daughter released from prison in return for payment of R20 000.

She is also charged with extortion and corruption involving sums of R52 000 and R20 000 arising from similar promises allegedly made to Vasantha Sewkarran, the mother of Rajcoomar’s husband and co-accused, Amith Sewkarran.

She claimed to be a representative of the Director of Public Prosecutions who could make Sewkarran’s case “disappear”.

Furthermore, she stands accused of extorting R2 000 from Agness Mnikathi in 2009 by advising her that she could clear her name with the credit bureau.

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