Fraud, corruption case against Linda Mti, Patrick Gillingham postponed

Former head of Correctional Services Linda Mti. Picture: African News Agency (ANA)

Former head of Correctional Services Linda Mti. Picture: African News Agency (ANA)

Published May 31, 2022


Pretoria - Financial troubles of former Correctional Services bosses Linda Mti and Patrick Gillingham have forced the Gauteng High Court, Pretoria, to postpone their fraud and corruption case to allow them to raise funds for their legal representation.

Mti, the former head of Correctional Services, and Gillingham, the former Correctional Services chief financial officer, appeared in court along with former Bosasa employee Andries van Tonder on Monday.

Former Bosasa chief operating officer (COO) Angelo Agrizzi – who is the fourth accused in the matter – was not in court. Mti and Gillingham, through their lawyers, requested a postponement to sort out their financial situation and to continue to pay their legal teams. The case against them was postponed to July 22.

The court also heard that the pulmonologist appointed by the State had assessed Agrizzi and the outcome of the assessment would be heard as a separate matter on July 12. Agrizzi also requested further particulars on the criminal charges against him, and the State has promised to furnish him with those details.

Mti is fingered as the central figure in the illegal awarding of massive tenders worth R1.8 billion to the controversial Bosasa company under ownership of the late Gavin Watson. These details are part of the final docket served on Mti and his co-accused. In the indictment, the State said that Mti was appointed as the national commissioner for the Department of Correctional Services as from September 1, 2001, for a period of three years.

As the accounting officer of the department, Mti held the responsibility for the financial and functional approval and awarding of tenders issued by the department. The State, however, argues that the four tenders forming the subject of these criminal charges were awarded to Bosasa, Sondolo IT and Phezulu Fencing during Mti’s tenure.

As a result of the combined charges, Mti is the only accused who was charged with five counts of contravention of the PFMA. Mti also faces one count of corruption. He also stands accused along with Gillingham and Agrizzi on four counts of fraud each.Gillingham was also charged with corruption. He also faces five counts of money laundering along with Agrizzi and Van Tonder.

Early in March, the Zondo Commission of Inquiry into Allegations of State Capture made damning findings against Bosasa. It found that Bosasa bribed politicians and government officials with cash, houses and cars, and paid R2.2 million for Gillingham’s divorce settlement.

Then Acting Chief Justice Raymond Zondo said Bosasa got contracts from public departments and entities between 2000 and 2016 worth at least R2.3bn.

Bosasa allegedly used R75m to pay bribes to ANC politicians, former post office senior executives, Gillingham, and Mti. Justice Zondo also found that Bosasa paid for the building of Gillingham’s house in Midstream Estate and Mti’s house in Savannah Hills. Bosasa installed security systems at Mti’s house at a cost of R350 000.

Pretoria News