A 51-year-old Eastern Cape attorney is in hot water for allegedly stealing Road Accident Fund money from a widow.
Shaun Masimla from Shaun Masimla Attorneys appeared in the Gqeberha New Law Court on Tuesday, facing charges of fraud and theft.
He was arrested by the Directorate for Priority Crimes Investigations (known as Hawks).
Explaining the charges, Hawks spokesperson Warrant Officer Ndiphiwe Mhlakuvana said it is alleged the victim’s husband was involved in a fatal motor vehicle accident in Gqeberha in 2010.
“The allegations further revealed that after his passing, his wife reportedly lodged a claim with the Road Accident Fund (RAF) through Shaun Masimla Attorneys, which was successfully processed,” said Mhlakuvana.
“An amount of over R500,000 was paid into Shaun Masimla’s Standard Bank trust account.”
Mhlakuvana said it is alleged the widow only received R80,000 from the attorneys.
“The victim allegedly complained to the RAF for compensation of R80,000 for the life of her deceased husband.
Mhlakuvana said the matter was reported to Gqeberha Serious Commercial Crime Investigations (SCCI) of the Hawks for probing.
“Their investigation confirmed that the RAF paid over R500,000 to Shaun Masimla’s Standard Bank trust account.
“However, instead of paying the money to the applicant, he allegedly took the cash for his personal benefit.”
Mhlakuvana said that Masimla is facing similar charges in another case that is being heard in court.
He is being held in custody and is expected to apply for bail on Friday.