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Mom, dad and son accused of running multimillion pyramid scheme get bail

Image: Pexels

Image: Pexels

Published Jun 13, 2022

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Durban: The three people accused of defrauding investors for around R7.8 million, through an alleged pyramid scheme, were granted bail by the Durban Specialised Commercial Crimes Court.

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Natasha Ramkissoon-Kara confirmed on Monday Ashlin Hardin, Raj Hardin and Shakila Hardin were granted bail. They have been charged with fraud and contravening the Banks Act.

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Ramkissoon-Kara said the three allegedly promised investors high payout rates on investments they made in a petroleum company. When they were unable to keep up with the payouts, the scheme could no longer sustain itself.

Ashlin was granted R20 000 bail, and Raj and Shakila R15 000.

The NPA confirmed Raj and Shakila Hardin were the parents of Ashlin.

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The four companies, Hardin Petroleum, Hardin Group Trust, Hardin Developments Pty Ltd and Hardin Family Trust, were listed as accused four to seven.

Further investigations revealed Ashlin was the director of Hardin Petroleum, which had its registered address listed in the Malvern area in Durban. The company was registered in 2013.

“Ashlin Hardin, Raj Hardin and Shakila Hardin appeared in the Durban Specialised Commercial Crimes Court on Friday, on charges of fraud amounting to approximately R7.8 million.

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“They are also charged with the Contravention of the Banks Act and the Financial Advisory And Intermediary Services Act. They appeared together with four companies.

“In court today, Ashlin was granted bail of R20 000, while Raj and Shakila were granted bail of R15 000 each. Their bail condition is that they do not interfere or communicate with witnesses,” Ramkissoon-Kara said.

The accused are due to return to court on July 12.

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