Fraud ac­cused fails to get charges dropped

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - NEWS -

AN AP­PLI­CA­TION made to have Por­tia “Pankie” Sizani dis­charged on the re­main­ing fraud and money laun­der­ing charges against her was dis­missed yes­ter­day.

Sizani, wife of for­mer ANC chief whip in Par­lia­ment Stone Sizani, ap­peared in the Port El­iz­a­beth Com­mer­cial Crimes Court be­fore mag­is­trate Mpu­tumi Mpofu, who said in dis­miss­ing the ap­pli­ca­tion the State ev­i­dence could not be re­lied upon.

The ap­pli­ca­tion in terms of Sec­tion 174 states if, at the close of the pros­e­cu­tion’s case, the court be­lieves there is no ev­i­dence the ac­cused com­mit­ted the of­fence con­cerned, it could re­turn a ver­dict of not guilty.

Ear­lier this year Sizani was found not guilty on five of the 15 counts of money laun­der­ing against her af­ter wit­nesses in the rel­e­vant cases could not be traced.

Sizani still has 16 counts of fraud and 10 counts of money laun­der­ing against her, how­ever. She is ac­cused of de­fraud­ing the Eastern Cape Ed­u­ca­tion depart­ment of more than R1.2 mil­lion. – ANA

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