N$4 million bank fraud withdrawn

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Maria Amakali

Windhoek-A Windhoek-based magistrate on Tuesday provisionally withdrew a case against Charles Manale, the man accused of defrauding a local commercial bank of N$4 million between September 2013 and December 2015.
Magistrate Venatius Sebby Alweendo provisionally withdrew the case against Manale’s from the court roll after he refused to give more time to the Prosecutor-General to make a decision and for further investigations to be conducted at the expense of the accused.

Manale, 33, who willingly handed himself over to the police in January 2016 after being on the run for a month, has been in police custody as the State feared he would abscond.

His case has been postponed several times due to incomplete investigations, absent witnesses and outstanding bank statements.

In June, the investigation officer dealing with the case informed the court the investigations were far from concluded as the prosecutor-general had sent back the docket with 26 instructions that needed to be complied with.

“The court will not give a further remand for further investigation. The case against the accused is withdrawn pending the prosecutor-general’s decision and further police investigations,” Magistrate Alweendo said.

Manale was an employee at Standard Bank Namibia’s Trust Account Division, Windhoek when he allegedly defrauded the bank’s clients by transferring payments from their trust funds to his personal bank account.

He was subsequently charged with theft and fraud for allegedly embezzling N$4 million from Standard Bank between September 2013 and December 2015. Manale pleaded not guilty on both charges.
Brownell Uirab was defending Manale, with Cedric Mundia prosecuting.

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