Ex-top cop Lamoer’s transactions were 'disguised' - investigator

2017-05-02 19:05
Former Western Cape police commissioner Arno Lamoer arrives at the High Court for what is expected to be the start of his corruption trial. (Caryn Dolley, News24)

Former Western Cape police commissioner Arno Lamoer arrives at the High Court for what is expected to be the start of his corruption trial. (Caryn Dolley, News24)

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Cape Town - Transactions between former Western Cape police commissioner Arno Lamoer, his best friend businessman Salim Dawjee and businesses were never concealed, the Western Cape High Court heard on Tuesday.

Lamoer's lawyer Grant Smith said that the transactions left a "perfect paper trail".

He said it was easy to pinpoint the people involved and cross-reference bank accounts to track transactions.

"These past five transactions: It was easy to find a link between the persons involved, not so?" he asked Hawks provincial financial investigation commander Colonel Wynand Wessels during cross-examination.

Wessels disagreed and said more work had been done to uncover the links when drawing up his report on the cash flow between the accused.

'Gratifications'

He said that people could easily use incorrect descriptions when doing a transaction, which threw people off the trail.

"Would you say these transactions were disguised and concealed in any way?" Smith asked.

Wessels believed they were. He said cheques were used, when the "the cheapest way of transferring money from one person to another is by way of electronic transfer".

Lamoer and three brigadiers - Darius van der Ross, Sharon Govender and her husband Colin Govender - together with Dawjee, have pleaded not guilty to 109 charges of corruption, racketeering and money laundering involving R1.6m.

The officers allegedly received "gratifications" they did not declare in exchange for advancing Dawjee's personal and business interests.

The State alleged that some 43 payments were made to the officers charged alongside Dawjee - around R75 000 to Lamoer, R7 000 to Van der Ross, R192 000 to Colin Govender and R1.36m to his wife Sharon Govender.

They denied being involved in any form of criminal enterprise, explaining that there were legitimate and legal reasons for the payments.

In interrogating the allegations of a criminal enterprise, Smith wondered why Wessels did not investigate other names that came up in cash flow documents.

He referred to a "Mr Fourie" that was listed as depositing a cheque, and who was later revealed as Lamoer's official driver.

"The point I would like to make is that there are role-players within an enterprise and would one that deposits a cheque might not be of importance for you?"

Wessels said it was not important because the recipient and the payer, Lamoer and Dawjee, were identified.

Lamoer's lawyer wondered whether it was strange for his client to hand his personal driver a cheque to cash, if transactions were being concealed.

"Not at all," said Wessels. "In an enterprise, a lot of people are used without their knowledge. A bank official may do a perfectly normal transaction without knowledge of an enterprise."

The trial continues.

Read more on:    police  |  arno lamoer  |  cape town  |  corruption  |  crime
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