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Johannesburg - Godfrey Lukhele, who skipped bail after he was arrested for defrauding the SA Revenue Services of R3 million, has been rearrested in Mpumalanga, the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (Hawks) said on Wednesday.

Hawks spokesperson Captain Dineo Sekgotodi said Lukhele's trail of alleged fraud dated back to 2013.

"Lukhele submitted fraudulent VAT returns to the South African Revenue Services twice in March 2013 for R3 million. He was initially arrested and absconded court four times while he was on bail of R70 000, which has since been forfeited to the state.

Lukhele's criminal deeds started in 2013 and spiralled further to 2014 and 2015 where he committed fraud in Nelspruit targeting the same institution, Sars."

He appeared briefly at the Nelspruit District Court on Tuesday where he was remanded in custody. The 33-year-old will appear again next week.

In another tax fraud matter in the Bloemfontein Magistrate's Court, Free State, three businessmen doing business with the local Mangaung Municipality were on Tuesday found guilty of 21 counts of fraud and failure to submit income tax returns.

Warrant Officer Lynda Steyn said a R200 000 fine was subsequently imposed on their company, Temoso Trading 135 CC. Business partners, Sekhukhune Mokoena, 46, and Mohapi Lekoro, 44, were sentenced to eight years each suspended for five years. They were both instructed to repay R648 000 each to the SA Revenue Services. The third business partner, Louis Harmse, 43, got an eight year sentence suspended for five years.  

African News Agency/ANA