Vodacom scammers released on bail
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By Itumeleng Koleile
Having spent over five months behind bars from December 2019, a quartet suspected of scamming Vodacom Lesotho M1.6-million worth of airtime, was released on bail yesterday.
The four suspects, police officer and three men, stand charged with theft after “unlawfully and intentionally stealing Vodacom airtime worth M1 622 600.00 through unauthorized airtime credit top-ups to 214 cellphones”.
They are Thato Simon Tebalo (31) a former Vodacom Lesotho employee, Mapule Lesekela (27) a police officer, Bongani Kosi (29), Tšekane Tšekane (34) and Teboho Seboka (32).
On Wednesday this week, Magistrate Nthabiseng Moopisa granted them a bail of M2000.00 each. They were also to pay surety of M50 000 each.
The first accused, Tebalo who worked as a charge specialist in the billing department, on February 1, 2018 and September 30, 2019 worked with the four accused in a common purpose and committed an offence in contravention of the crime of theft.
The accused were represented by advocates Kelebone Monate and Martin Mohanoe.
On behalf of the LMPS member, adv Mohanoe applied for bail on grounds that his client is not only a member of the Lesotho Mounted Police Service, but also that she has a two-year-old child and resides at Hlotse Police Line.
He said as a member of the police, she can easily be traced, adding that she was cooperative with the police during the investigation thus not a flight risk.
As per their lawyer, Kosi, Tšekane and Seboka were applied for bail on grounds that they each are the caretakers of their families, they do not pose any threat as flight risks and that they will stand trial to the finality.
Bail was granted on conditions that they attend remands and stand trial to finality and that they should not on any account interfere with crown witnesses.