The Cape Navigator

Seaside Community Newspaper

Bellville, Cape Town, Crime

International Car Salesman Sentenced for Fraud and Theft in Bellville

Michael Hawthorne

CAPE TOWN – In the Bellville Specialised Commercial Crimes Court, international car salesman Coert Knoetze (56) has been sentenced for fraud and theft after being convicted on January 22, 2024. The court, in a ruling delivered on February 9, 2024, sentenced Knoetze to six years of imprisonment, wholly suspended for four years under the condition that he refrains from committing fraud, theft, or violating the provisions of Act 12 of 2004 of PRECCA during the suspension period.

Knoetze, who must also repay the deceased estate a total amount of R257,750.00 within seven days from the sentencing, was declared unfit to possess a firearm. In addition to the suspended sentence, he faces 24 months of correctional supervision.

The charges against Knoetze stem from his business dealings with a complainant involving the export of vehicles from South Africa to neighbouring countries since the year 2000. The complainant’s husband, who was reportedly a partner in the business, passed away in 2010. Following the death, Knoetze continued the vehicle export business and, according to the allegations, unlawfully transferred business funds amounting to R320,690.00 into his personal account from the shared business account.

Furthermore, Knoetze claimed that the business owed the South African Revenue Service (SARS) an amount of R500,000.00. However, investigations revealed no proof of communication from SARS regarding the claimed debt. The accused is also accused of changing the ownership of the company without consulting the deceased’s spouse.

The matter was reported to the Hawks Serious Corruption Investigation, based in Bellville, leading to the prosecution and subsequent sentencing of Knoetze. The Western Cape SAPS Spokesperson, Lieutenant Colonel Siyabulela Vukubi, confirmed the details of the case and emphasized the importance of holding individuals accountable for fraudulent activities.

The verdict serves as a warning to those engaged in illicit activities within the business sector and sends a strong message about the consequences of financial crimes. The Bellville Specialised Commercial Crimes Court’s decisive action underscores the commitment to upholding the rule of law and protecting the interests of the community.

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