Method Gqetywa, 48, was employed as an assistant master of the High Court in Kimberley.
He was arrested during a buy-and bust (section 252) operation when he solicited and accepted R15,000 in cash to interfere with the administration of a deceased estate.
“On July 4, 2019, and July 18, 2019, when Gqetywa was still employed by the High Court accepted gratification amounting to R15,000 from the complainants to process the estate of a deceased known to the complainants,” the provincial spokesperson for the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), Mojalefa Senokoatsane said.
“The accused instead of executing his duties as stipulated, that he be honest, trustworthy, and professional as a public servant, acted in a manner that was illegal, untrustworthy, and unauthorised by accepting the money.”
The matter was reported to the police and after an entrapment led by police he was arrested and charged with corruption.
During the trial, Senior State advocate Wilhelmus Els argued that a clear message should be sent to other would-be perpetrators in the public service, and that the justice system is serious about fighting corruption and fraud-related case, especially within the public sector.
Advocate Els also emphasised the importance of the court sentencing the accused to direct imprisonment for his indiscretions because he was trusted with a very important job of serving the people and he betrayed that trust by accepting the money in order to execute his duties.
Gqetywa was convicted on one count of corruption and sentenced to seven years imprisonment of which three years were suspended for a period of five years.
“The NPA applauds the Prosecution team and the colleagues in the Hawks for getting a conviction on this important corruption-busting matter.
“It is hoped that this sentence will send a clear message to other perpetrators of corruption and fraud that, indeed, the NPA and law enforcement agencies are serious about fighting crime,” Senokoatsane said.