Council boss held for fraud

Frank Maponya

Frank Maponya

The long arm of the law appears to have caught up with a senior municipal official in Limpopo for allegedly falsely reporting his car stolen and pocketing a R200000 insurance payout.

Timothy Molopa, communications manager at the Molemole municipality in Botlokwa, handed himself over to the police in Polokwane yesterday after learning that he was being sought for fraud.

This relates to an incident in which Molopa allegedly reported his car stolen on September 11. He alleged that two armed men hijacked his Jeep Cherokee outside Polokwane and he reported it to the Polokwane police.

Molopa allegedly lodged a claim with an insurance company which then paid him R200000.

Polokwane police spokesman Captain Mohlaka Mashiane said yesterday they launched an investigation soon after Molopa reported the case. This was standard procedure. He said the car was last seen crossing the Beitbridge border post into Zimbabwe on September 9, two days before it was reported stolen in Polokwane.

He said the car was found to have crossed the border with legal papers, which led them to believe Molopa could have sold the car so he could claim from the insurance company.

"We are not yet sure whether Molopa sold the car or what happened. That is still a subject of our investigations," he said.

"The fact that the insurance company has paid Molopa makes him look like a fraudster, so he was held," he added.

Mohlaka said Molopa was in the company of his lawyer when he handed himself over to the police. An arrangement was made that he went to court immediately, where he was granted R1000 bail.

His next appearance will be on November 27.

Botlokwa mayor Monica Mohale said yesterday she could not respond before getting more details.

She said she was out of town when the matter was brought to her attention