Trial of CIU's former CFO unexpectedly postponed

Solly Lazarus & Hein Barnard are accused of defrauding the Crime Intelligence Unit’s secret slush fund.

FILE. Lazarus and Hein Barnard appeared briefly in the Pretoria Regional Court today. Picture: Saps

PRETORIA - The fraud and corruption trial against former Crime Intelligence Chief Financial Officer Solly Lazarus and a subordinate has been unexpectedly postponed.

Lazarus and Hein Barnard appeared briefly in the Pretoria Regional Court today.

The pair are accused of defrauding the unit's secret slush fund of about R100,000 to pay for cars and other luxury items.

It appears that confusion and miscommunication between the state and defence teams meant prosecutor Gerrie Nel was not prepared to continue with the case today.

Nel told the court he was under the impression the case was placed on the record provisionally, but the defence was prepared to continue.

The matter has now been set down for a week in July.

State witness Jan Venter, who is a dealer principal at a car shop, testified that he set up a secret account for Lazarus and Barnard, which was used to fund new vehicles.

Meanwhile, the two accused have appointed a new attorney.