House arrest for municipal employee who defrauded RDP housing seekers out of R130,000

A municipal employee was ordered to pay back the her victims.FILE IMAGE: Independent Newspapers

A municipal employee was ordered to pay back the her victims.FILE IMAGE: Independent Newspapers

Published Feb 22, 2024


A municipal employee who defrauded two people seeking low-cost housing out of R130,000 has been ordered to pay back the money and slapped with a house arrest sentence for two years.

Sylvia Nyandeni, 41, was employed by the Steve Tshwete Local Municipality in Mpumalanga when she preyed on two people who were desperate for housing, misrepresenting herself as someone who was authorised by the municipality to receive money for the government-built low cost houses in Rockdale, Middelburg.

She received payments totalling R130,000 from the victims.

Nyandeni was found guilty of money laundering, fraud, theft, and contravention of the Prevention of Organised Crime Act (Poca).

Nyandeni was sentenced to give years imprisonment for fraud and theft which was wholly suspended for a period of five years on condition she is not convicted of fraud and theft.

She was further sentenced to 24 months on house arrest for Poca and money laundering.

She will have to be under house arrest for the full duration of the correctional supervision.

The court further ordered Nyandeni to repay the victims an amount of R30,000 each and it also declared her unfit to possess a firearm.

The matter was investigated by the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (known as the Hawks).

The Hawks’ provincial spokesperson, Warrant Officer Thandi Tshabalala said the crimes took place in October 2018.

“The matter was reported to the Hawks Middelburg-based Serious Commercial Crime Investigation.

The investigation was conducted and the accused was arrested on July 23, 2020. She appeared before the court on several occasions until she was found guilty and sentenced,” Tshabalala said.

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