REAL ESTATE AGENT, ANNICA VAN STADEN, LINKED TO FRAUDULENT SALE OF RDP HOUSES RE-ARRESTED
MPUMALANGA – Annica Van Staden (46), a real estate agent sought by the Hawks’ Serious Commercial Crime Investigation team was re-arrested by the team from her hiding place in Boksburg Gauteng Province on Monday 26 April 2021.
The arrest follows Annica Van Staden’s recent publications on the media as a wanted suspect dating back to 20 April 2021. It is alleged that the suspect was selling Reconstruction and Development Programme (RDP) houses without the knowledge of the owners.
The buyers allegedly paid money into her business trust account, trading as “Housing First Eiendomme”. As soon as the money was received into her account, it would be transferred to her accomplices.
It is further alleged that Annica Van Staden was arrested in Protea Glen, Soweto in August 2019 for fraud and she was released on bail and the matter was postponed to 11 November 2020 but she evaded court. Consequently, a warrant of arrest was issued against her.
A further investigation linked her with other cases of fraud worth a total value of approximately R184000,00. These cases are in Orange Farm, Nelspruit, Lydenburg and Piet Retief, where more than 36 potential witnesses laid complaints against her.
The Hawks swiftly acted on information from the community about her hiding place. The team proceeded to the address and found her with all her luggage packed and ready to flee. The suspect was arrested and appeared before the Middelburg Magistrate Court on Wednesday, 28 April 2021.
During the investigation, it was established that the suspect was allegedly using different modus operandi to crook the victims. In Middelburg, Annica was allegedly selling RDP, repossessed and private owners houses. In Protea Glen she was allegedly selling bricks and building cement and air-conditioners. In Piet Retief and Cape Town(Brackenfell), she was allegedly selling vehicles. In Lydenburg, she was allegedly selling containers.
The amount involved is appropriately over R3Millon rand. She was advertising her business on Social media, Facebook page. During the court appearance, she was given an opportunity to look for a representative, she was sent back to the cells until 05 May 2021 by the same Court. Investigation continues and more arrest is imminent.
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The Provincial Head of the Hawks in Mpumalanga, Major General Zodwa Mokoena applauded the team for their quick response to arrest the suspect before evading. She further appreciated the work done by the Communication Officer in the partnership with the media for publishing information to the public who responded positively leading to the arrest.