Windhoek-Eighteen out of an initial 19 suspects, who were arrested in connection with a massive tax fraud involving N$114 million from the Receiver of Revenue, will be tried in the High Court.
Public Prosecutor Raisa Shafuda on Friday informed the 18 accused of the prosecutor general’s decision that they stand trial in the High Court, with their first appearance set for April 19.
The 18 accused comprise 16 Angolan national and two Namibians
The accused are facing more than 400 charges, charges ranging from fraud, conspiring to commit fraud, forgery and uttering, corruptly using false documents and corruptly giving a false document to an agent as per the prosecutor general’s decision.
The accused are Mamsy Mweneni Hilma Nuuyoma, Lukau Nestor, Benvindo Momafuba, Pembele Zimutu, Paulo Kiala, Joaquim Pedro Espanhol, Joao Manuel dos Santos, Tatiana Luquena Muchadu Gonga, Carlos Victor Eliseu, Isaac Cativa Cupessala, Paquete Americo Kapayola Jose, Eugenio Pio do Amaral Gougel, Malakias Tomas Rufine, Paulino Manuel Natal, Carlos Felecoano Tchinduku, Miapa Aurelio Nelson, Lucio Jose Cazembe and Noah Boykie Naukosho.
The prosecutor-general withdrew charges against Joshua Kaviyu Hidinwa.
The accused, who all denied guilt by tendering a not-guilty plea in June last year, were arrested following investigations by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) in December 2015 for allegedly defrauding the government through the Ministry of Finance of N$114 million.
According to the investigations by the ACC, between January 2014 and December 2015, the accused defrauded Avashe Consultancy, which manages the finance ministry›s VAT refund system on behalf of the ministry, by submitting documents containing false information in order to get the ministry to issue VAT refunds.
Magistrate Venatius Alweendo issued an order for the transfer of the matter to the High Court, extending the accused’s bail. The accused are all out on bail ranging between N$10,000 and N$50,000.