Govt employee’s pyramid scheme fleeced ‘investors’ in Ulundi of millions

2012-08-23 00:00

A GOVERNMENT administrator used his office safe to keep millions of rands he helped to make through a crooked pyramid scheme, it is stated in a case in which R3,305 million was declared forfeited to the state by the high court in Pietermaritzburg yesterday.

An Arts and Culture Department administrator in Ulundi, Linda Jethro Njoko, and others started a fraudulent scheme offering “investors” huge but unrealistic interest.

For instance, people who handed over R300 to the scheme would be promised R1 000 a week or so later, court documents allege.

Njoko and his partners, Zandile Lady-Prince Mathebula, Khanyesile Prince Ngema and Petros Mandel, established the investment club named Inzuzu and Inthuthuku Investments.

They told their victims that the money would be invested on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. However, there was no evidence that money was invested in a reputable institution.

Motlalekhotso Molelle, of the Asset Forfeiture Unit in KwaZulu-Natal, said that R3,3546 million the police seized in Ulundi were preserved by the high court in March this year.

Police investigator Ariel Moloi said that scheme members operated outside an Ulundi store and R4 391 600 was collected in three days.

“Investors” were invited into a building and if they handed over money were given a receipt, but no formal contract was signed.

On February 18 this year Njoko and another man reported that they were taking R1,305 million in the boot of a car to Njoko’s office, but that they were hijacked and robbed of the money.

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