Fraudster jailed

Estelle Ellis
A BLOEMFONTEIN woman, who is already serving jail time for 15 counts of theft, was sentenced to three years in prison by the Port Elizabeth Commercial Crimes Court yesterday for defrauding a Humansdorp-based reverend of R80000 in a dodgy investment scheme.

Magistrate Leon Claassen ordered that two years of this sentence be served concurrently with another eight- year sentence she is serving for theft in Christiana in North West Province.

Amanda Appelgryn, 45, formerly from Bloemfontein and Jan Kempdorp, has several previous convictions for fraud and theft including a case in which she was convicted of defrauding a farmer of R12500 after failing to deliver hay to his farm as promised.

Her husband, Andries, 45, also from Bloemfontein, also pleaded guilty to defrauding the reverend and was given correctional supervision.

The court heard that the Appelgryn’s estate was sequestrated in the Free State High Court in July 2002.
Despite the fact that they were to legally obliged to have declared this to prospective investors, they devised an investment scheme offering investors a 12% monthly return.

The couple pleaded guilty to the charge of fraud and explained that Amanda would advertise in newspapers for potential investors in a “profitable business”.

Reverend Andrew Bruintjies, who lives in Humansdorp, contacted her and said he was interested in investing. He was told that his money would be invested in a scrap-metal business.

He signed two agreements with her handing over R80000 in total for investment.

She promised to pay him 12% interest per month and to pay his capital back to him on three months notice.

After he invested R50000 with her, she paid him R6000 in interest and then convinced him to give her another R30000. After he paid this money over he received no further interest payments.

Andries has previous convictions for housebreaking, assault, drunken driving, threatening and obstructing the police and criminal defamation.

The court ordered that a further jail term of three years be suspended on condition that R70000 be paid back to Bruintjies.

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