Michael Thomas, a top cop in crime intelligence who was promoted twice in as many months, has denied he has a criminal record for fraud.
The Daily News’s sister paper, The Star, published a story on Thursday that Thomas was appointed in crime intelligence as a lieutenant-colonel on January 28 last year, before he was promoted to colonel two months later.
The Star quoted sources within the intelligence unit as saying Thomas was convicted of fraud after he did not hand over R4 000 bail to a client following his acquittal.
But on Thursday Thomas denied he had a criminal record.
He said he had appealed against both the conviction and sentence in the Pietermaritzburg High Court in 2009 and was successful.
Thomas explained that the Department of Correctional Services’ record was deleted after it was supplied with the High Court document. This, he said, was done legally and there was nothing sinister involved.
Thomas said he had applied for a job in the police last year when he had no criminal record.
He added he had recently had a security-vetting clearance done.
Contacted on Thursday, Thomas said he would furnish the paper with the Pietermaritzburg High Court records.
On Thursday, after conducting an inquiry, Correctional Services confirmed that charges against Thomas were withdrawn on November 3, 2009.