Arrests in alleged fraud over 2010 WCup stadium
The general manager of South Africa's best-known football club was facing charges of fraud and forgery Thursday in the building of a 2010 World Cup stadium which has been mired in scandal since a local politician was shot dead after speaking out about corruption.
Kaizer Chiefs, the 11-time South African champion, said in a brief statement that Bobby Motaung appeared in court in the northern city of Nelspruit alongside businessman Herbert Theledi, who handed himself over to police.
A third man, Chris Grib, was in custody in Cape Town and would be transferred to Nelspruit, a spokesman for South Africa's organized and economic crime unit said.
Their arrest was nothing to do with a separate investigation into ''assassinations'' in the Nelspruit area, the spokesman, McIntosh Polela, told The Associated Press. But, killings were being probed in another case, he said.
Polela said the three arrested were accused of using a forged tax document in winning a $17 million contract to help build the Mbombela Stadium, the colorful zebra- and giraffe-themed venue which hosted four games at the World Cup two years ago, including then world champion Italy's 1-1 draw with New Zealand.
Bobby is the son of Kaizer Chiefs chairman and founder Kaizer Motaung and was released on 50,000 rand ($6,000) bail alongside Theledi.
In 2009, Jimmy Mohlala, the speaker for the local municipality, was killed after raising concerns over corruption in the bidding process to build the $145 million, 40,000-seat stadium. Polela told AP Mohlala's death was one of a number being investigated by his unit, which is known as The Hawks.
Kaizer Chiefs said that the fraud allegations against Motaung were in relation to his position as a director of a company called Lefika Emerging Equity. Chiefs said Theledi was a co-director of Lefika.
''This is not a club matter and should not be treated as such,'' Chiefs said in its statement, confirming that the pair had appeared in court and were bailed. Kaizer Chiefs also denied reports that Motaung had been arrested at the club's headquarters.