Former Eastern Cape govt official found guilty in R2.6m fraud case

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Mzoli Phakade has been found guilty of fraud
Mzoli Phakade has been found guilty of fraud
Thorsten Nilson, EyeEm, Getty Images

A former Eastern Cape government official has been convicted of fraud.

On Friday, former project manager in the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform, c was found guilty of fraud in the Gqeberha Regional Court

The 51-year-old was accused of defrauding the department of more than R2.6 million, said Hawks spokesperson Warrant Officer Bonnie Nxumalo.

"Between February and December 2006, Phakade assisted a now-deceased man to defraud the department of more than R2.6 million. The deceased approached the department as a representative of the CPAD Farm Holdings Trust with 38 members to apply for financial assistance to purchase the farm Honeyville in Humansdorp through the Land Reform and Development Programme," said Nxumalo.

READ | Ex-health department employee arrested on fraud charges after her company won tender

Once the funds were approved, Phakade falsified documents and registered the farm to the entity's name, where the deceased was the sole director, and not the Ttust.

Nxumalo:

The 38 supposed applicants were not aware of the process. The incident was reported to the Gqeberha based Hawks' Serious Commercial Crime Investigation team. After the investigation was completed, the accused was arrested.

Phakade is expected to appear in court again on 29 November for sentencing.

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