Arguments in mitigation and aggravation of the sentencing of self-confessed fraudster Esmerelda Majiedt, 50 – who allegedly defrauded a cement company of N$56.5 million – will be heard in the Windhoek High Court on November 16 and 17.
In light of her shocking confession, the State decided to stop the prosecution of her five co-accused. Consequently, she was found guilty on 397 charges of fraud and her bail was cancelled. High Court Judge Christie Liebenberg informed her of this on Wednesday.
In July, a tearful Majiedt pleaded guilty to 404 counts of fraud in the Windhoek High Court. In a plea explanation handed to Judge Liebenberg Majiedt admitted that she committed fraud over a period of five years while employed with AfriSam Namibia, and that this cost the company N$56,5 million .
Five of Madjiedt’s co-accused were then acquitted of all charges. The five persons acquitted are the Bezuidenhoudt brothers (Calvin and Gerald Albertus Bezuidenhoudt), Rundu businessman Daniel Batista de Jesus, Majiedt’s sister Louise Izaaks, as well as a former partner of Izaaks, James Wilson.
Majiedt’s bail of N$250 000 was also cancelled and forfeited to the State.
In her plea explanation, Majiedt said Rundu-based businessman Daniel Baptista De Jesus and building contractors, Calvin and Gerald Bezuidenhout, had paid her in cash when she allowed them to pay discounted prices for cement worth tens of millions of dollars that they bought from AfriSam Namibia, but were not aware that she was defrauding her employer.
The other two accused, Louise Izaaks and James Wilson, were also not aware that money which she was paying into a bank account of a close corporation of theirs and into a personal account of Isaaks were the proceeds of her fraudulent activities, Majiedt said.
Majiedt was arrested in April 2011 and spent a year and a half in custody before she was granted bail in an amount of N$250 000. Advocate Constance Moyo is representing the State. Majiedt’s defence lawyers are Advocate Louis Botes and Bradley Basson.