Hefty fine for two Durban auto spares companies guilty of illicit dealings
The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) has welcomed the prosecution of two Durban auto spares companies which swerved onto the wrong side of the law.
Wind Motors and South x South 29 (Pty) Ltd pleaded guilty to two counts of receiving stolen property and one of failing to register as a motor vehicle builder in the Durban regional court recently.
Both businesses have been ordered to pay a collective fine of R150,000.
NPA spokesperson in KwaZulu-Natal Natasha Kara said South X South was established three years ago and specialised in exports, while Wind Motors was well-known for trading in used car parts as well as building and modifying vehicles for over 20 years.
The court heard that on December 8 2018, a container packed at Wind Motors was transported to the Durban harbour for shipment to Mauritius.
“Upon receiving information that there were illicit goods in the container, members of the SA Police Service (SAPS) stopped the container,” said Kara.
“The search revealed that the motor vehicle parts in the container were linked to a string of theft, robbery and fraud cases from the Durban area.
“Further investigations revealed that Wind Motors — being a builder, modifier and seller of vehicles — was conducting business without relevant registration from the department of transport, and that South x South 29 had received a stolen motor vehicle from a business associate.
“On the first two counts, the companies received fines totalling R280,000, half of which is suspended for five years, provided they do not commit the same offences during that period.
“The sentence agreement on the third count was a R10,000 fine for failing to register as a motor vehicle builder, thus resulting in the effective fine of R150,000.”
Kara said the conviction for failing to register as a motor vehicle builder is the first such conviction in KwaZulu-Natal.
Prosecutor Vishalan Moodley told the court that the case sent out a warning to the auto-building and spare parts industry to ensure high levels of ethics and governance in their businesses.