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Rhodes University finance administrator convicted of defrauding the institution

A 32-year-old woman has been convicted for defrauding Rhodes University. File picture

A 32-year-old woman has been convicted for defrauding Rhodes University. File picture

Published Mar 25, 2022

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Cape Town – The Gqeberha Commercial Crime Court convicted the financial administrator at Rhodes University for defrauding the institute of over R400 000.

Wendy Zimasa Xabiya, 32, was convicted on numerous counts of forgery, fraud, money laundering and contravention of the Prevention of Organised Crime Act (Poca).

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According to the Eastern Cape spokesperson for the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (Hawks), Captain Yolisa Mgolodela the crimes were perpetrated between the period of January 1, 2017 and December 1, 2018.

“Xabiya, employed as a finance administrator at Rhodes University in Grahamstown, processed fraudulent travel and subsistence claims.

“Thereafter, funds were deposited unlawfully into fraudulent beneficiaries’ accounts for her personal enrichment,” Mgolodela said.

She said the university discovered the abnormality and referred the matter to the Gqeberha based Serious Commercial Crime Investigation team.

This led to Xabiya’s arrest on December 3, 2021.

“The investigation revealed that the university was prejudiced of cash to the value of more than R480 000.

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“She made a short court appearance on the same day and was released on a warning,” Mgolodela said.

After a series of court appearances, Xabiya was convicted earlier this week.

She is expected back in the same court for sentencing on June 20.

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In an unrelated incident in the Western Cape, Marlon Morne Machelm, 49, was arrested for allegedly duplicating invoices to defraud the company he worked for.

The Cape Town based Serious Commercial Crime Investigation team arrested Machelm on Thursday.

He appeared in the Blue Downs Magistrate’s Court on a charge of fraud.

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He was granted R1 000.

Machelm is accused of enriching himself and prejudicing his company an amount of more than R97 000 during the period between 2015 to 2016.

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