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J Arthur Brown launches bid to get out of prison

Brown turned to the ConCourt to appeal his sentence and will also apply for bail at the High Court.

FILE: Former Fidentia boss J Arthur Brown on 15 May 2013. Picture: Sapa

JOHANNESBURG - Convicted fraudster and former Fidentia boss, J Arthur Brown is to approach one of two courts this week as part of his bid to get out of jail.

Brown is currently serving a 15-year prison sentence after the Supreme Court of Appeal last month set aside his previous sentence which included a R150, 000 fine.

Brown originally faced 190 charges and was accused of misappropriating funds belonging to the widows and orphans of mineworkers, but was convicted on only two counts of fraud.

The initial sentence was handed down in the Western Cape High Court.

The man at the centre of one of the biggest financial scandals in the country, is taking a dual approach to secure his freedom after being jailed last month.

As Brown awaits a hearing on his Constitutional Court appeal against his 15-year prison sentence, his lawyer will return to the Western Cape High court tomorrow to apply for bail.

His lawyer brought an urgent application for bail in the Western Cape High court just before Christmas, but the matter was postponed to Thursday this week.

Judge Thandazwa Ndita and the Prosecution at the time raised concerns about whether the High Court had the jurisdiction to hear the matter.

BROWN'S AFFIDAVIT

In his affidavit, Brown said the Bloemfontein court's decision to impose a harsher sentence constituted an infringement of his rights.

He also wants the highest court in the land to decide on the validity of the Supreme Court of Appeal's decision to allow and accept additional aggravating evidence, which the state and defence agreed would be excluded during his trial when he pleaded guilty.

The misappropriated funds were from investments for the Transport Education and Training Authority.

The remaining money was taken during Fidentia's takeover of the Mantadia Asset Trust Company.