Publication: Rapport Issued: Date: 2001-09-30 Reporter: Andries Cornelissen Editor:

Arms Man Detained for Sitting on Documents

English Translation for : Wapenman voor Stok omdat Hy op Dokumente Sit


Publication  Rapport
Date 2001-09-30
Reporter Andries Cornelissen
Web Link


A company which was involved in the controversial arms deal is refusing to hand over documents  Awhich can be very interesting reading material@ and which are necessary for the investigation into the arms deal, to the Scorpions. 

Mr Ian Pierce, director and shareholder of Futuristic Business Solutions (FBS), was taken into custody on Friday for defying a subpoena ordering him to provide specified documents. 

The first subpoena ordering him to hand over the documents was issued on 2001-06-10 and another was issued thereafter on 2001-07-10. 

Pierce alleges that he didn=t know about the summons since it was served on his secretary. 

According to Mr Sipho Ngwema, spokesperson for the National Directorate of Public Prosecutions, a charge was then lodged with the police. 

FBS was in the news after a copy of the draft agreement between the company and Thyssen, a  member of the German Frigate Consortium which was awarded the contract to sell four corvettes to South Africa, was found in the media=s possession. 

According to this agreement, Thyssen would have paid FBS an amount of R1,2 million if the German company was awarded a part of the Corvette contract. 

According to the contract, FBS had to win the favour of key persons in Parliament, the Department of Defence, Armscor, the Joint Parliamentary Committee on Defence, the Department of Trade and Industry and the defence industry. 

Similar contracts were signed with other potential arms suppliers. 

Retired Lt Gen  Lambert Moloi, MK-stalwart and confidant of Mr Joe Modise, Minister of Defence during the acquisition process and Mr Tshepo Molai, Moloi=s son-in-law, are shareholders in FBS. 

Since early last year, after decisions were taken about the arms deal, they have also been directors of African Defence Systems (ADS) which acted as the coordinator for the frigate contract. FBS owns 20% of ADS. 

FBS=s name was also mentioned in the Public Hearings of the Public Protector.

Dr Richard Young, who alleges that he lost the contract because of ADS, came under fire about confidential documents which he obtained from two different sources and which contained classified information. 

Mr Shane Dwyer, legal representative of the German Frigate Consortium, asked whether Young knew that the documents were stolen during a burglary at FBS. 

Pierce was released with a warning and will appear in the Pretoria Magistrates Court tomorrow.

With acknowledgment to Andries Cornelissen and Rapport.