Picture: SAPS Twitter

A Mpumalanga Master of the High Court official and her boyfriend accused of swindling desperate claimants out of almost R1.7 million have been finally brought to book, the Hawks confirmed on Friday.

The 44-year-old senior official was arrested on Thursday following investigations into corruption and fraud at the Mpumalanga Master of the High Court.

The boyfriend, 35, was arrested on Friday after handing himself over to the police.

The investigation was launched by the Serious Commercial Investigations in 2018 and probing the alleged siphoning of claimants funds from the court for almost two years. 

The Hawks launched the investigation following several complaints from people.

According to Hawks spokesperson Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi, the woman allegedly directed claimants to her “lawyer” boyfriend to process their claims.

"Some claimants never received their monies. Instead it was shared among the two. So far almost R1.7 million has since disappeared from eight families," he said.

Mulaudzi added that an investigation also uncovered that that the official, a Malawian national, misrepresented the State by claiming to South African. 

The duo appeared in the Nelspruit Magistrates' court on charges of corruption, fraud, money laundering, impersonation and violation of the Immigration Act.

"A search and seizure operation will also be conducted today at the boyfriend’s offices in Nelspruit as part of the ongoing investigation,"  Mulaudzi confirmed.

The two were remanded in custody and the matter was postponed to Monday 11 November 2019.

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