Seven relatives of former crime intelligence boss Richard Mdluli cost the state R5m within a year of being appointed as agents of the police unit, the judicial commission of inquiry into state capture heard on Tuesday.
"Over R5m was exceeded taking care of these agents. I believe that it was this amount. This was from March 2010, from their inception, to 2011 October, when I went into witness protection," police official Dhanajaya Naidoo told the commission of inquiry into state capture, as it delves into the alleged looting of the Secret Service account within Crime Intelligence.
Naidoo, who was their handler, said this R5m – at the state's expense – paid for salaries, medical bills, vehicles, the hiring and setting up of safe houses, and other claims.
Of the seven family members – identified as FM 24, FM 29, FM 26, FM 28, FM 27, FM 25 and FM 30 – two could not be confirmed as relatives of the former intelligence head.
Their real identities cannot be revealed, as they are/were operatives within intelligence.
While Naidoo handled all the administrative issues relating to the agents, he could not tell the commission what they did operationally.
The commission further heard how FM 27 and FM 28 rarely reported for work, but preferred staying at home or shopping at the mall instead.
"On numerous occasions, I had to deal with them regarding payment of salaries, reconciling petrol claims. On most occasions they were not at the office, they would be at home or the mall shopping. It was rare to find them at the office."
"I know this, because when I would call them, they would say they were at home or the mall," Naidoo explained.
The commission also learnt how FM 26 never reported for duty and faced no consequences, even after the issue was reported to the then-chief financial officer, General Solly Lazarus.
"He was also appointed in the cyber crime unit. I only handled his admin. On numerous occasions he did not report to work. I brought this to the attention of General Lazarus and I do not know if he was ever disciplined for this.
"On numerous occasions, I would see his petrol slips. I would see that he travelled to Mpumalanga – this is where he was based. He would need permission before he left the province. I brought the slips to Lazarus, and I don't know what happened to him," Naidoo added.
Naidoo further estimated that the monthly remuneration for the seven agents linked to Mdluli would have cost a minimum of R200 000.
The inquiry continues.