Lay litigant Maletzky denies fraud charges

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Lay litigant Maletzky denies fraud charges

Lay litigant August Maletzky and his former employee Simon Afrikaner, pleaded not guilty to charges of fraud, corruption, forgery and conspiracy to commit fraud and corruption and money laundering in the Windhoek High Court yesterday before Judge Herman January.

The 48-year-old Maletzky, who is representing himself after failing to get a legal aid lawyer, told the judge that he will not disclose the basis of his defence and that it will become apparent during the trial. He, however, indicated that the charges are a smokescreen and cover-up for other different transactions that preceded the sale of the house.

Trevor Brockerhoff, who represents Afrikaner, told the judge that the plea of not guilty is in accordance with his instructions and that his client is denying conspiring with anyone to commit any offence. 

“Any actions my client might have undertaken was on instructions of his employers, accused one and two,” he said. 

Their co-accused, lawyer Titus Mbaeva, died in December last year.

All charges emanate from the dubious sale of a house in Windhoek West worth N$2.5 million on 6 July 2017. The prosecution alleges that Maletzky defrauded the couple by pretending that he wanted to lease the property in question. The prosecution further notes that Maletzky instead sold the house to a third party by means of false pretence and without the knowledge of Samuel Visconde Dias, the actual owner of the house. 

He was allegedly fully aware that he was not the lawful owner of the house and had no right to sell it. Court documents indicate that Maletzky used a fraudulent power of attorney in which the property owners supposedly authorised him to sell the house. 

It is alleged that the power of attorney was prepared by Mbaeva and Afrikaner, according to court documents. Thus, the three conspired to commit the offence.

With regards to the charge of fraud, it is alleged by the State that the accused, in concert and with common purpose, wrongfully, unlawfully, falsely and with intent to defraud misrepresented to the Registrar of Deeds and Masiza Law Chambers that Dias and his wife Isobel nominated, constituted and appointed Maletzky with power of substitution to be their lawful agent/representative in their name and stead to sell, sign all transfer documents and give effect to the transfer of Erf 3733 at the price of N$2.5 million. Furthermore, that the special power of attorney notarised by Mbaeva is authentic and duly signed by Dias.

With regards to the count of corruption it is charged that they corruptly and with common purpose gave to an agent with Masiza Law Chambers a special power of attorney dated 6 July 2017 while knowing it was false and contained defective

The charge of forgery is in relation to Maletzky only.

With regards to the charge of conspiring to commit corruption it is alleged that the accused in concert and common purpose conspired to commit fraud.

On the charge of money laundering it is alleged that they are guilty in that they between 6 July and December 2017 acted in concert and with common purpose wrongfully, unlawfully and knowingly acquired property which they knew or ought to reasonably have known that it formed part of the proceeds of unlawful activities.

The State is represented by advocate Dominic Lisulo. The matter continues today and the accused are free on warning.