N$7.4m estate theft accused awaits trial

Home National N$7.4m estate theft accused awaits trial
N$7.4m estate theft accused awaits trial

Maria Amakali

The High Court will give new trial dates in May when the court will be available to hear the case of an estate administrator accused of stealing N$7.4 million from two estates. 

Yesterday, Judge Herman January indicated it would not be prudent to give trial dates when the accused Mervin Kozonguizi’s lawyer is not present. Thus, the court postponed the matter to 22 April for the allocation of trial dates. 

The accused along with his close corporation, Kozonguizi and Associates CC, are being tried on two charges of corruptly using an office or position for gratification, two counts of fraud, alternatively theft, and 16 charges of money laundering. 

The State is alleging he siphoned millions of dollars from two estates of the deceased. 

According to the indictment, the State alleges during the period from 19 September 2014 to August 2015, Kozonguizi stole N$6.4 million from the estate of the late Gustav Kandjambi Tjiuiju that he was administering. 

It also claims that between 3 December 2015 and June 2016, Kozonguizi stole N$1 million from the estate of the late Dorothia Yolandi Beukes. 

Kozonguizi allegedly first bought a Ford Ranger pick-up for N$454 000 at the end of September 2015 – eleven days after the N$7.9 million raised from the sale of a farm owned by the late Tjiuiju had been paid into the personal bank account of Kozonguizi and a plot of land at Omeya, south of Windhoek, for which he paid N$620 000 – about two and a half weeks after the money from the farm sale had landed in his account. 

In February 2015, Kozonguizi again dipped into the money allegedly stolen from Tjiuiju’s estate to buy land at Okahandja for N$2.1 million. 

The State is also charging that on 4 December 2015, a day after he received N$1 million that was supposed to be distributed to the heirs of the late Beukes, Kozonguizi allegedly used N$420 000 of that money to buy a Jeep Grand Cherokee SUV. 

The State further claims he used the money stolen from the two estates to make payments to other people and buy cars and properties for himself.

He has since denied guilt at the start of his trial. 

Kozonguizi is currently out of custody on a N$100 000 bail. 

– mamakali@nepc.com.na