Fraud, 60 charges and a web of payments - the state's case against Free State asbestos 7

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The seven accused in the controversial asbestos contract case seated at the dock in the Bloemfontein High Court.
The seven accused in the controversial asbestos contract case seated at the dock in the Bloemfontein High Court.
Chanté Schatz, News24

Snapshot: Before a stitch of work was done, the Free State human settlements department paid businessman Edwin Sodi's company Blackhead Consulting R51 million for a dodgy asbestos audit project that has become mired in corruption, fraud, theft, and money laundering. 

The charge sheet: The state has laid out 60 damning charges against the seven accused, arrested this week in relation to a R255 million contract, including corruption, fraud, money laundering, contravention of the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities (Precca), and contravention of the Public Finance Management (PFMA) acts.

The money: The state detailed how payments were processed by the human settlements department to Blackhead Consulting until August 2016. In the document, the state argues that in October 2014, Nthimotse Mokhesi, who stands as accused number one and was head of department at human settlements at the time, appointed Sodi’s Blackhead Consulting and Diamond Trading as a professional resource team to eradicate asbestos in the province.  

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