Wife who exposed R90,000 girlfriend allowance sentenced in R200 million SARS fraud case

Wife who exposed R90,000 girlfriend allowance sentenced in R200 million SARS fraud case

A group of eight individuals were charged and sentenced on Monday at the South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg for defrauding the South African Revenue Service (SARS) of a staggering R100 million.

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) revealed that between 2009 and 2015, the syndicate operated a VAT fraud scheme, claiming fraudulent Value Added Tax (VAT) refunds from SARS.

The syndicate’s leaders included Jeremiah Musiwacho Dube and Maxwell Ndlovu Mavudzi, both Zimbabwean nationals who fraudulently obtained South African citizenship, along with Zambian national Boaz Chilala and Sello Rathete.

“The syndicate kingpins defrauded SARS by submitting VAT returns alleging that entities registered in their names and those of their co-accused had incurred VAT expenses by importing goods into the country and purchasing from local suppliers,” explained Gauteng NPA spokesperson Phindi Mjonondwane.

Mjonondwane disclosed that the group claimed to import diesel stored with Vopak Limited and Sasol Oil, later selling it to companies like Engen and Imperial Bulk Services, among others. Despite claiming R200 million, only R100 million was paid out by SARS at the time of their arrest in 2015.

The syndicate’s exposure stemmed from an anonymous tip to SARS from Rebecca Dube, the wife of Jeremiah Musiwacho Dube. Her revelation came after discovering her husband’s affair with Moliehi Constance Ramone, to whom he provided a monthly allowance of up to R90,000, funding international trips.

Ramone’s extravagant lifestyle, surpassing her salary from Hollard Insurance, raised suspicions. The anonymous tip aided SARS in tracking down all involved and tracing funds in various bank accounts.

During investigations, Mavudzi and Dube attempted to bribe a senior SARS official with R150,000 to ensure payment of a false claim. Despite their efforts to evade justice through legal appeals, their applications were dismissed.

Adam Phiri and Daniel Khanyile cooperated as state witnesses, while Christopher Dube remains at large after absconding while on bail extension.

Jeremiah Musiwacho Dube received a 65-year prison sentence, while his wife, Rebecca Dube, was sentenced to 25 years. Mavudzi also received 65 years, and Ramone was sentenced to 10 years. Rathete and Edward Shoniwa received 15-year sentences, while Audrey Radebe and Bongani Mbonani were each sentenced to five years.

Makhosini Mpofu

Experienced Co-Founder with a demonstrated history of working in the automotive industry. Skilled in Marketing Management, Negotiation, Business Planning, Operations Management, and Analytical Skills. Also the Music & Entertainment Reporter with My Afrika Magazine.

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