MTN accountant who allegedly stole R23 million conspired with others

MTN’s accountant who is accused of defrauding the company of more than R23 million would have to wait until next week Thursday to find out if she will be granted bail.

Branden Ruth Moshabane appeared in the Johannesburg Specialised Commercial Crimes Court on Tuesday afternoon.

Dressed in a long grey skirt and long-sleeved T-shirt, with her head covered with a black shawl, Moshabane appeared calm during her bail hearing.

The 42-year-old Moshabane was arrested on April 11. She faces 16 counts of fraud which is a schedule five offence, prosecutor Bongani Chauke told the court.

“The company entrusted her with the powers and authority…within the company’s banking systems. The accused was not authorised to make monetary transfers from the account of the company to her outside bank,” Chauke said.

The State alleges that the incident happened between 2011 until the beginning of 2017.

Chauke said the accused allegedly transferred money from the MTN account into her own personal account.

Chauke said Moshabane had “fictitious requisitions and money was paid because she used the people who were supposed to sign a first signature and second signature to release the funds”.

He said MTN believed the transactions were lawfully authorised because they trusted Moshabane.

Chauke also added that it was not easy for MTN to pick up the alleged frauds.

The alleged crimes were picked up by the financial intelligence centre board, who alerted MTN, he said.

“We are not talking potential loss but actual loss.”

Chauke also read out a statement from the IO in which he states that the accused had conspired with other unknown suspects to commit the crime.

Chauke also said Moshabane has five properties registered in her name. He said they wanted to investigate if Moshabane owned more properties registered through the companies she owns.

Chauke said there would be further arrests in the matter. He said the State opposed bail in the matter.

In her affidavit read out in court, Moshabane said she intended pleading not guilty.

She told the court through her attorney Piet du Plessis that she would not interfere with witnesses should she be granted bail.

Moshabane is expected back in court on May 4 for judgment on bail.

News24

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MTN accountant who allegedly stole R23 million conspired with others