State to decide on Mpisane

The state is set to decide whether to continue pursuing tax fraud charges against Durban businesswoman Shawn Mpisane.

Rafik Bhana, for Mpisane, told the Durban Regional Court on Monday, an agreement had been reached with the prosecution to postpone the trial until October 21.

He said this agreement had been reached to allow the National Directorate of Public Prosecutions (NDPP) a chance to review representations that the case against Mpisane lacked any merit.

She is accused of inflating the invoices of her company Zikhulise Cleaning, Maintenance, and Transport CC by R4.7 million in an attempt to cut her tax bill.

On July 22, the matter was postponed until Monday to allow the NDPP time to respond to representations made by Mpisane’s legal team about the prosecution’s conduct.

Prosecutor Meera Naidu did not arrive at court on Monday, and Arno Rossouw stood in for her.

National Prosecuting Authority spokeswoman Natasha Ramkisson said on Sunday that Naidu had been issued with a notice of intention to suspend her, and that she had been given an opportunity to explain why she should not be suspended.

Ramkisson said a decision still had to be taken on whether to suspend her. She said Naidu had been accused of “impropriety”.

Naidu was also the lead prosecutor in a case in the Pinetown Regional Court, in which Mpisane is accused of interfering with a State witness.

Naidu has also been removed from this case.

Before the lunch break on Monday, Rossouw had sought a postponement to familiarise himself with the case.

He told magistrate Blessing Msani while the accused was entitled to a fair trial, so was the State.

After the lunch break Rossouw confirmed that an agreement had been reached with Mpisane’s legal team, as a result of which the NDPP would decide by October 16 whether to pursue the case against her.

Msani adjourned the matter to October 22.


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