By Anna Shilongo
Thirty-year-old Maxwell Spanneberg, alleged to be the mastermind behind the N$344 000 fraud at the Social Security Commission (SSC), made another appearance in the Katutura Magistrates’ Court this week together with his co-accused.
All 64 suspects were to re appear in court yesterday following the postponement of their case but accused 42 and 55 were not present at court.
The magistrate then decided to cancel their bail.
The suspects appeared before magistrate Cosmos Endjala.
A warrant of arrest has been issued for the two who were not present at court yesterday but to be withheld until December 13, 2007.
The suspects are accused of defrauding the SSC of an amount in excess of N$344 000
They were not asked to plead and their case was postponed to November 26, 2008 for the prosecutor General’s decision.
Spanneberg, who is alleged to be the mastermind behind the case is charged with fraud and corruption, but he pleaded not guilty on the two accounts of fraud and theft.
Spanneberg is a former SSC employee who worked in the registry division at the head office in Windhoek.
It is suspected that he used the computer passwords of other staff members to lodge, process and authorise fraudulent sick leave claims that he allegedly pocketed.
He was suspended from his post on August 30 last year when a full-scale investigation into his actions was ordered.
He was dismissed on November 2, after being found guilty of misconduct following a disciplinary hearing.
Following his dismissal, Spanneberg was arrested in November last year, after which he was granted bail of N$15 000, with a list of conditions attached.
Last year, Spanneberg was ordered to report to the police at Otjomuise twice each day – at 06h00 and again at 18h00.
He is not allowed to leave the district of Windhoek without the investigator’s permission but he may not contact any of his co-accused, other SSC employees or any person who might be a potential witness in his case.
He is not allowed to enter any SSC premises, the magistrate ordered.
The magistrate also ordered that Spanneberg may not leave the house where he stays in Otjomuise in Windhoek between 19h00 and 05h00 each night.
In previous proceedings, only 25 of the suspects had legal representation, while others still needed to apply for legal aid. However, this time all suspects in court were represented.
The suspects were represented by Andre Louw, Jan wessels of stern & Barnard Associates, Boris Isaacs, Mel Harmse Associates, Hennie Barnard and Partners, Eino Kamanya of Sisa Namandje and Company, and Louise Casten of Neves Legal Practitioners.