/ 29 November 2013

ANC’s John Block refused leave to appeal NPA asset grab

Northern Cape ANC leader John Block.
Northern Cape ANC leader John Block.

Block brought the application earlier this month after a final forfeiture order was granted in respect of his shares the Trifecta group and its renovations to his guest house in Upington, the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) said.

In June, the court provisionally granted the NPA an order freezing more than R20-million of Block's assets.

Assets worth R5.85-million were forfeited to the state under the final order granted on September 13 in terms of the Prevention of Organised Crime Act, the NPA said on Friday.

The property included 25 ordinary shares given to Block by Trifecta Resources and Exploration on September 8 2006, and R349 919, which was the value of the renovations.

"The court found that the Assets Forfeiture Unit had proved on a balance of probabilities that the 25 ordinary shares and the renovations were corrupt payments or kickbacks made to Block," the NPA said.

"Block did not oppose the application and filed no opposing affidavit."

On Friday, Judge Bulelwa Pakhati dismissed with costs Block's application for leave to appeal agains the granting of the forfeiture order.

Block, ANC MP Yolanda Botha and local government MEC Alvin Botes were arrested by the Hawks earlier this year.

Trifecta allegedly entered into a number of lease agreements with the Northern Cape social development department in which the rentals, or rental space, were grossly inflated.

As a result Trifecta received, or would receive, at the end of the lease agreements, rentals of R57-million. – Sapa