Delay in Manale’s N$4 million bank fraud case

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Maria Amakali

Windhoek-The prosecutor-general (PG) has given the investigative officer dealing with the N$4 million bank fraud case of Winston Manale three months to further investigate the matter, so that the PG’s office can come to a decision.

The PG was expected to make a decision in the case of Manale, who is said to have embezzled his employers, Standard Bank, out of N$4 million between the period of September 2013 and December 2015.

The prosecution informed the court on Friday that the PG’s decision was available, but that the matter has been put on hold for further investigations.

“We have received the PG’s decision. However, it states that about 26 points need to be further looked at by the investigating officer,” explained Public Prosecutrix Laura Mabuku.

Further directives were given, indicating that the investigator needed to pay closer attention to bank receipts, statements and other documentation once these have been obtained from the bank in question.

Manale voluntarily handed himself to the police in 2016 after a warrant for his arrest was issued in December 2015 when the bank discovered the alleged fraud. An employee at Standard Bank Namibia’s trust account division, Manale went on the run in December 2015.

He was denied bail at his first court appearance. According to the charge sheet, he faces charges of fraud and theft and intentionally defrauded Standard Bank Namibia, as well as Dorothea Christiana du Plessis, a client of Standard Bank, by transferring fraudulent payments from the Trust Fund of the bank into his personal bank account.

The alleged fraudulent transactions amount to around N$4 million. Although he has maintained that he is innocent throughout, Manale was denied bail and has been in custody since.

Magistrate Venatuis Alweendo postponed the matter to June 27 for further investigations, as per the PG’s request. Manale will remain in police custody at the holding cells of Windhoek Police Station. Attorney Meriam Kenaruzo is representing Manale in the matter.

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