Trial date set for VBS Mutual Bank theft case

The case of 14 suspects was delayed due to a change of legal representatives by some of the accused.

FILE: ANC treasurer in Limpopo Danny Msiza, businessman and former ANC Youth League member Kabelo Matsepe and five others appeared in the Palm Ridge Magistrates Court on 12 March 2021 for their alleged role in the looting of VBS funds. Picture: Boikhutso Ntsoko/Eyewitness News.

JOHANNESBURG - A trial date has now been set for the much-anticipated case of 14 people accused of stealing from the poor in the VBS Mutual Bank heist.

The 14 suspects, including top African National Congress (ANC) Limpopo official, Danny Msiza, and municipal manager, Tsakani Ngobeni, made a brief court appearance on Monday in the High Court in Pretoria and were ordered to return on 12 October.

READ MORE: 14 accused in VBS Bank heist told to consult lawyers before next appearance

They are accused of stealing nearly R2.3 billion from VBS and doctoring financial statements. Depositors and investors lost their money including municipalities, which had transferred funds to be kept by VBS.

The case of 14 suspects was delayed due to a change of legal representatives by some of the accused. The judge has ordered a pretrial conference to allow for consultation, and for the prosecution to iron other the issues.

The suspects have denied the charges, with others claiming that they were not given the opportunity to respond to the findings of the report by Advocate Jerry Motau. He listed details of looting, implicating a number of people in 2018.

The bank was placed under curatorship by the Reserve Bank, and a forensic investigation was instituted to establish exactly what went wrong and it's expected that more details will be disclosed when the trial begins in over two months’ time.

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