News24 Exclusive: SA's youngest self-made millionaire's partner a convicted criminal

2015-09-09 13:07
George van der Riet (Facebook)

George van der Riet (Facebook)

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From selling muffins to making millions, we get to know this 23-year-old millionaire

2015-08-24 11:04

Sandile Shezi is one of South Africa's youngest millionaires. We take some time to get to know him, and find out just how he made it so big so young. Watch.WATCH

Johannesburg - South Africa's "youngest self-made millionaire" Sandile Shezi's business partner is a convicted criminal in the United Kingdom.

Since the 23-year-old shared his success story in the media, News24 has been contacted by several industry players raising suspicion over the operations of his company, the Global Forex Institute (GFI), and his business partner, George van der Riet.

News24 has established that Van der Riet served time for manslaughter and drug dealing in the UK.

But - in Shezi's words - the GFI co-founder merely "spent two years as a guest of her Majesty" as a result of "an altercation where a man sustained a head injury and died in hospital three days later". The company's co-founder has since "done a lot of charity work", added Shezi.


This was part of a 600-word response from Shezi when confronted by the claims against him and his company.

Van der Riet spoke to News24 at the weekend, saying they would respond to the allegations in writing by Monday.

Shezi sent News24 his and Van der Riet's comments on Monday afternoon.

Van der Riet also sent News24 a WhatsApp message, saying the publication of this story would ruin his life: "This is going to destroy my life when I have already been punished."

According to the Africa Forex Cup website, Van der Riet held the top position in the leadership board for the Africa's top traders 2014 list.

But News24 received information claiming that Van der Riet was convicted of manslaughter and drug dealing in the UK, under the name David van der Riet.

The BBC reported in July 2011 that David van der Riet admitted to manslaughter and being in possession of drugs, with the intention of supplying them, during a case at the Old Bailey in London.

The picture of David van der Riet on the BBC website matches that of George van der Riet on his Facebook page.


According to The Law Pages website, a David van der Riet was sentenced in 2011 to three years for manslaughter and three years for possession of a controlled substance with intention to supply.


Shezi told News24 on Monday that Van der Riet "was not really involved with GFI anymore".

A post on the GFI's Facebook page from August 19 however shows Van der Riet leading a course and says: Thank you Sandton students. Had a great time with you guys at the mentorship and especially the advanced group. Keep making a killing. George".


Shezi said: "I am aware that over five years ago, George van der Riet was involved in an altercation where a man sustained a head injury and died in hospital three days later. George spent two years as a guest of her Majesty [the Queen of England].

"He spent the two years studying and helping people become literate. Since his return to South Africa, he has done a lot of charity work and has helped mentor me and some of my advanced students for free."

He said Van der Riet had "gone out of his way" to make up for that mistake.

"He has dedicated his life since his return doing charitable deeds and good will to try and make up for that one mistake which he has already been punished for as seen fit by her Majesty the Queen of England."

Read more on:    sandile shezi

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