16 January 2013

South Africa: Sentencing Postponed for Fraud Physio As Defence Calls for Department of Labour to Testify

press release

The defence in the fraud matter involving self-confessed fraud physiotherapist Jurry Sehunoe (34) is to call for a Department of Labour financial expert to testify in order to justify the value of amounts involved in the matter.

Sehunoe, from Rustenburg in the North West Province, was expected to be sentenced today in the Pretoria Specialised Commercial Crimes Court for defrauding the Department of Labour's (DoL) Compensation Fund (CF) R2,1 million. He pleaded guilty in October 2011 to 15 counts of fraud and 26 counts of money laundering. Sehunoe is out on a bail of R3 000.

The Departments of Correctional Services, and Social Development have submitted the outstanding pre-sentencing reports to enable the State to proceed with sentencing procedures.

Advocate Keitumetsi Mogale representing Sehunoe said the defence want the Department of Labour to explain how the value of transactions contained in a spread sheet submitted to Court as an exhibit were arrived at.

The State did not object to a Department of Labour financial expert being called.

Sehunoe pleaded guilty to siphoning the department by submitting fraudulent claims to the department for patients that he did not treat. The fraudster was allegedly recruited by members of a syndicate, which allegedly included former employees of Department of Labour's Compensation Fund, to submit fraudulent claims and banking details.

The syndicate is alleged to have processed the fictitious claims and its members would later meet and share their loot.

In the matter Sehunoe was originally charged with two co-defendants - Maxwell Ramaphosa and Samuel Mfeleng - who are both former employees of the Department of Labour.

The case of Ramaphosa and Mfeleng was in a separation of trial transferred to the Pretoria Magistrate's Court. The duo has since pleaded not guilty in the matter. They are out on a bail of R3 000.

Ramaphosa and Mfeleng are also entangled in two other alleged fraud cases against the department, which are currently on trial.

The Sehunoe matter was postponed to 22 January to allow for an expert from Department of Labour's Compensation Fund to testify.

The Compensation Fund is a public entity of the Department of Labour. The Fund provides compensation to workers for occupational injuries and diseases sustained thereof.

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