Mpumalanga businessman joins alleged fraudster estate agent in the dock

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A Mpumalanga businessman has been arrested in an RDP housing scam to appear alongside estate agent Annica Van Staden.
A Mpumalanga businessman has been arrested in an RDP housing scam to appear alongside estate agent Annica Van Staden.
  • A Mpumalanga businessman has been arrested in connection with an RDP house scam.
  • He and an estate agent are accused of working together to con people.
  • The 46-year-old estate agent was charged in connection with the alleged scam in 2019.

A 55-year-old Mpumalanga businessman has been arrested in connection with an RDP housing scam and is expected to appear in court alongside estate agent Annica van Staden, who was arrested more than a week ago in connection with the allegations.

Hawks officers arrested the businessman, national security company owner Fotoboy Makua, on Wednesday.

"The Hawks investigation has linked Makua to Annica van Staden, 46, a real estate agent who was sought and arrested by the Hawks' Serious Commercial Crime Investigation team at her hideout in Boksburg, Gauteng on Monday, 26 April 2021. It has now been established that the pair were working together when selling Reconstruction and Development Programme (RDP) houses without the knowledge of Tokologo- and Rockdale-based owners," Hawks spokesperson Captain Dineo Lucy Sekgotodi said.

Van Staden was initially arrested in Protea Glen, Soweto, in August 2019, for fraud. She allegedly defrauded people of more than R3 million in various scams. After she was released on bail for allegedly illegally selling the RDP houses as well as vehicles and shipping containers, she failed to attend court. She was rearrested last week.

READ MORE | Estate agent arrested for RDP housing scam after months on the run

It is alleged that she sold the RDP houses as well as repossessed houses without the owners' consent in Middelburg, Mpumalanga.

She has also allegedly been linked to other fraudulent activities involving R3 million, which entailed selling bricks, building cement and air conditioners in Protea Glen.

In Piet Retief, Lydenburg and Cape Town, she allegedly illegally sold vehicles and shipping containers.

"The buyers allegedly paid money into Van Staden['s] business trust account, trading as Housing First Eiendomme. As soon as the money was received into her account, it would be transferred to her private account and also to Makua's account, as well as others," Sekgotodi said.

Makua appeared in the Middelburg Magistrate's Court on Wednesday on charges of fraud and money laundering. He and Van Staden are expected to return to court on Tuesday.

"More arrests have not been ruled out as investigations continue," Sekgotodi added.

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