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South African mining mogul arrested for defrauding UK investor of R147 million gets bail

Photo of a man wearing blue

Mining magnate, Christopher David Kimber, 62, was released on R100,000 bail after he was arrested by the Pretoria-based Hawks’ Serious Economic Offences Unit. Picture: Hawks

Published Jun 30, 2023


Businessman Christopher David Kimber, 62, was released on R100,000 bail when he appeared before the Kimberley Magistrate’s Court for allegedly defrauding another businessman based in the UK of more than R140 million.

“The head office-based Hawks’ Serious Economic Offences Unit arrested a businessman (Kimber) for allegedly defrauding another businessman from the United Kingdom of millions,” said Gauteng spokesperson for the Hawks, Captain Bonnie Nxumalo.

“On Wednesday, June 28, 2023, the accused, Christopher David Kimber handed himself to the Hawks offices in Kimberley where he was charged with two counts of fraud, two counts of money laundering and was taken to court,” Nxumalo said.

It is alleged that in 2013, Kimber, who owns mines in the Northern Cape, met with the businessman from the UK.

The businessman was exploring an investment opportunity, where the UK man was buying 50% shares of Kimber’s businesses.

“The businessman reportedly paid R147 million into Kimber’s bank account, but the money was transferred into personal bank accounts, thus no investment was made.

“When the businessman realised that no investment has been made, he reported the matter to the police. The Hawks conducted an investigation which led to Kimber’s arrest,” said Nxumalo.

Kimber is scheduled to return to court on August 17.

Last month, in an unrelated matter, five people appeared before the Middelburg Specialised Commercial Crime Court after they were arrested for crimes including fraud, theft and money laundering.

At the time, Mpumalanga Hawks spokesperson Captain Dineo Lucy Sekgotodi said the five were accused of defrauding struggling power utility Eskom.

“Zandile Rosemary Ngcobo, 43, an Eskom employee working at Tutuka Power Station as the procurement officer (buyer) together with her co-accused Annemarie Stander, 55, Jessica Khubheka, 61, Solomon Twala, 59, and Nomsa Sibiya, 49, appeared before the Middelburg Specialised Commercial Crime Court,” said Sekgotodi.

She said the five were arrested by the Middelburg-based Hawks’ serious commercial crime investigation team.

“The investigation revealed that during 2021, Eskom’s Tutuka Power Station issued an order to Umnandi Conference and Catering for the purchase and delivery of two containers at the power station.

“It is alleged that the accused (Ngcobo), as procurement officer, colluded with the service provider (Umnandi Services) and submitted fraudulent documents, inflated the prices from R60,000 to R939,000, causing actual prejudice to Eskom,” said Sekgotodi.