Auctioneer's PA to be sentenced for fraud

2013-11-21 23:07

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Cape Town - A Cape Town woman who took advantage of her elderly employer will be sentenced on Friday on 631 counts of fraud involving almost R1m.

Najwa Taliep, 41, who had been out on warning, as opposed to bail, appeared in the Bellville Specialised Commercial Crime Court on Thursday.

Magistrate Sabrina Sonnenberg declared her warning revoked and said Taliep would remain in custody.

Prosecutor Zama Mntayi said she had abused her position of trust, and called for a prison sentence.

Taliep was the personal assistant of prominent auctioneer Julius Buchinsky, 86, with access to his business and personal bank accounts.

Her duties included processing all electronic transactions, administrative functions, and paying clients who had put their homes up for auction.

According to the charge sheet, Taliep fraudulently transferred R961 081 from accounts in the names of Julius Buchinsky Organisation, SA Sale Promotions and Julius Buchinsky into her two personal bank accounts with FNB between January 2008 and December 2010.

To cover her tracks, she reflected these fraudulent electronic transfers as payments to the Buchinsky clients or as day-to-day expenses.

Legal Aid defence lawyer Hailey Lawrence said Taliep was now in the employ of Leno de Villiers, who had taken over the ailing Buchinsky business, and was willing to pay a fine on her behalf of up to R10 000.

She said Taliep had repaid in excess of R200 000, and was willing to repay the balance in monthly instalments.

Mntayi countered that the repayments were offered only after Taliep was caught out and confronted about the embezzlement.

Read more on:    cape town  |  fraud

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