Publication: News24 Issued: Date: 2002-07-03 Reporter: Barnie Louw Editor:

NIA, Harksen in Fugitive Ring


Publication  News24
Date 2002-07-03
Reporter Barnie Louw
Web Link,1113,2-1134_1207957,00.html


Cape Town - Members of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) are allegedly involved in procuring false identity documents for German fugitives who hide in South Africa.

This informal network infiltrating South Africa over the past few years has close ties not only with Capetonian businessmen, but also with the underworld, including known drug lords and German tax fugitive Jurgen Harksen.

Harksen, who has managed to contest an extradition order to Germany since 1994, is allegedly the contact person for newly arrived fugitives in South Africa as he "knows important people and is au fait with the South African legal system".

These facts were disclosed in evidence during a bail application on Tuesday for one of the fugitives, Erwin Heldmann (45), who had been arrested in Sea Point last week on fraud charges.

Diverting tanks to Saudi Arabia

Former German junior defence minister Ludwig-Holger Pfahls (60) (on the left) is also part of the informal network. He has been a wanted person since 1999 on charges of corruption and tax fraud involving R20 million.

Pfahls is said to have accepted a bribe from an arms dealer to divert an order of 36 tanks destined for the German defence force to Saudi Arabia. The German national detective service has traced the bribe money to Pfahls's Swiss bank account.

Inspector Dietmar Kuhberger, a member of the special investigating team probing fraud charges against Heldmann and Harksen in South Africa, testified they discovered Heldmann's presence in South Africa while probing Harksen's case.

Harksen's telephone records were examined and certain telephone numbers led them to Heldmann, Kuhberger testified.

Heldmann was convicted in Germany on 39 charges of diamond fraud involving R2.5 million. He escaped from custody in 1999 and it was thought that he was hiding out in South East Asia, but he fled to Cape Town.

Channelling money from abroad

Kuhberger said Heldmann had false South African identity documents in the name of Andrew Bagley, which he had been using to open bank accounts and launch two companies. It appears that money from abroad was channelled through the account.

The charge against him stems from submitting false identification while opening a bank account. Heldmann was released on R500 bail.

Meanwhile NIA spokesperson Lorna Daniels has confirmed that the agency's Eastern Cape provincial manager, Dumisani Luphungela, has been suspended pending an investigation into allegations of corruption against him.

Luphungela has until recently been Western Cape deputy chief. Daniels declined to disclose the allegations against him.

With acknowledgements toNews24 and Die Burger.

Reference : "The Last Amigo" by Stevie Cameron and Hugh Cashore



IRE Story

Choppers, Plots, and Cold Hard Cash

Canadian Broadcasting Corp. - CBC
Choppers, Plots, and Cold Hard Cash
Harvey Cashore; John Goetz; Lindren MacIntyre; Jennifer Fowler; Howard Goldenthal
Publication date:
March 14, 2001
The Canadian Broadcasting Corp. tells the story of Karlheinz Schreiber, the "man who was the catalyst for the party funding scandal in Germany, thus forcing the resignations of a handful of CDU politicians, including the current party leader, and former Chancellor Helmut Kohl from his post as honorary chairman. It also caused former Deputy Defense Minister Holger Pfahls to flee the country after being charged with receiving a bribe from Schreiber. Schrieber is also well known in Canada, mainly for his secret dealings with members of the Conservative Party in the 1980s and early 1990s under then Prime Minister Brian Mulroney."
Contest Finalist
Total pages:
Canada; Germany; CDU; Helmut Khol; Holger Pfahls
Other info:
Related links:
Related video:
Want to place an order? Email us or call us at 573-882-3364