Hotel accountant seeks plea deal

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iol news pic Lady Justice by Mike Cogh Mike [email protected] File image

Cape Town - A woman accused of defrauding the Raya Hotel Group, owners of the Capetonian Hotel in Cape Town and the Balmoral Hotel in Durban, is to try again to negotiate a plea-bargain with the State.

This emerged in the Bellville Specialised Commercial Crime Court on Monday.

Mymona Creighton, 31, is charged with multiple counts of alleged fraud and one of money laundering.

Her trial was to have commenced on Monday, after the collapse of previous plea negotiations with prosecutor Simon Leope in September last year.

Instead, at Leope's request, magistrate Sabrina Sonnenberg postponed the case to February 24, for the outcome of the second round of negotiations.

Creighton began working for the group 10 years ago as the assistant to the accountant and seven years later was promoted to the post of accountant.

She was based at the head office in Cape Town.

She was responsible for the payment of the group's creditors, and had to present cheques for payment to the group's management for signature.

Leope alleges that she either deleted or changed the details of the payees on cheques, after payment had been authorised by management.

It is alleged that the cheques would then be made payable to fictitious people, and the proceeds channelled into Creighton's personal bank accounts.

To “cover her tracks”, Creighton is alleged to have recorded the correct cheque details on management payment schedules, but intercepted and destroyed bank-processed cheques as they arrived back from the bank.

In this manner, Creighton eliminated evidence of her manipulation, and misappropriated the money.

Leope alleges that she concealed the payments, and used fictitious names, to hide the true nature of the fraudulent payments.

Creighton faces 250 counts of fraud involving R10 263 813 and one charge of money laundering.

Sapa



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