Two foreigners wanted in Botswana for murder have been charged with fraud in the Johannesburg Commercial Crime Court and denied bail, the Star newspaper reported this week.
Georg Elize, 35, a Nigerian, and Sifelani Makwara, 40, a Zambian, came to the Commercial Crime Court hoping to secure bail following their arrest last week over the fraudulent use of a credit card belonging to Botswana accountant Robin Tinley.
The State opposed bail on the grounds that the two would evade the fraud trial and the impending murder charge in Botswana. Tinley was murdered in his home in Gaborone on January 5. His body was found two days later. Tinley was SA off-road champion in 1979 and immigrated to Botswana, where he set up an accountancy firm.
The newspaper reported that Elize and Makwara were nabbed on Wednesday after the police found that Tinley’s credit card was being used at various shopping centres in SA. Police and the banks monitored the shopping transactions, which included household appliances and car tyres.
Makwara was the first to be nabbed after police followed him to a tyre dealership in Jo’burg when he went to fit a tyre he had ordered using the same credit card.
Elize was arrested during a roadblock manned by the Jo’burg metro police in Midrand. He then took them to his townhouse in Midrand, where some of the goods bought with the credit card were found.
Botswana authorities want the two to stand trial here together with Tinley’s ex-wife Angela, who is of British origin. Angela, 62, was arrested in Botswana a few days after the murder and has already made two court appearances, the last being on January 20.
She was granted bail.