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Another Muvhango staffer bust for graft

Muvhango cast. Picture credit: Facebook.
Muvhango cast. Picture credit: Facebook.

Another former Muvhango employee has been arrested for allegedly defrauding the popular SABC2 soapie of about R2-million.

The former employee, who at the time of the alleged fraud was employed as a payroll clerk, handed himself over to the police yesterday and appeared at the Specialised Commercial Crimes Court in Johannesburg.

Prosecutor advocate Bongani Chauke told the court the man was charged with several counts of fraud and theft after he allegedly submitted fake invoices as supporting documents for the payments of actors and their agencies.

His appearance comes after the soapie's former production manager was arrested and appeared in court last week for allegedly defrauding Muvhango of R3-million from its petty cash. The case was postponed to today for a bail and plea hearing.

The state is accusing the payroll clerk of illegally using the names of actors to defraud Word of Mouth Productions and its owner Duma Ndlovu. The 35-year-old father of five is alleged to have fraudulently used the names of, among others, Marie Ravele, Seipati Motshwane, Matshidiso Vera and Arthur Mbambo to commit the alleged crimes.

The suspect's job entailed ensuring that actors and their agencies were paid, capturing of the employees and actors information and capturing the names of actors and their agencies for shooting purposes, among other things.

According to the charge sheet, he is accused of siphoning off R1765198 between February 2012 and August 2017.

"The accused. did create false and/or fake invoices on the payroll system and would submit the said invoices as supporting documents for the payment of actors and/or agencies.

"These invoices were presented with the names of the actors and/or their agencies but the bank account number [belonged to the accused]."

The accused cannot be named as he is yet to plead.

Magistrate Bennita Oswell granted him R10000 bail and will appear again in court today to argue for relaxation of his bail conditions as he needs to travel to two African countries on business.

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