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Namibia: Forex traders can’t afford a senior lawyer

Forex traders Michael Amushelelo and Gregory Cloete have reached a financial crisis that they are now looking to the state to provide legal representation for their upcoming criminal trial. According to their lawyer Kadhila Amoomo, the two men could not find sufficient funds to allow them to appoint a senior legal adviser of their choice.

“Most of the resources available to the defendant were used for the official bail application of the defendant (Amushelelo) in the lower court. Perhaps the court can show us some mercy and postpone the bail. ‘case to enable us to obtain funds to appoint a lead solicitor,’ Amoomo told the Windhoek High Court yesterday.

However, Vice President Judge Hosea Angula said the court could not be held hostage as the defendant could not afford a private lawyer.

He then advised the couple to consider contacting the Legal Aid Directorate.

Thus, Amoomo indicated that they will approach the Ministry of Justice to consider providing a lawyer for Amushelelo and his co-accused Cloete.

The case had previously been adjourned to allow Amushelelo and Cloete to appoint lead counsel. Their case was adjourned to July 21 for legal aid. The business duo are awaiting trial on 365 counts of fraud, including theft under false pretences, carrying out banking activities without authorization and conducting a Ponzi scheme, tax evasion, tax evasion, non-payment of tax, money laundering and racketeering. Amushelelo and Cloete are also charged alongside legal entities Amushe Hello Investment, Amushe Advertising & Design, Amushe International Holding, Van Der Walt Trailer Manufacturing, Amushelelo Family Trust T187/2019 and Global Growth Investment Namibia.

These entities are all represented by Amushelelo as founder and sole member.

According to the indictment, the defendants worked in partnership, collaboration or collusion in a fraudulent business formulated and operated as a Ponzi scheme. The state alleges that the couple advertised two types of investment facilities which they offered through an unregistered company in the name of Global Growth Investment Namibia to members of the public through face-to-face seminars. face, Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, Instagram and various other social media platforms under the guise that invested funds would be traded on foreign exchange platforms on behalf of investors.

It is further alleged that the two defendants assisted each other in the execution and management of the “fake” currency trading activity, which they conducted through the non-existent company Global Growth Investment Namibia (Pty) ltd.

To further their plan, it is alleged that they formulated and exploited the corporate personas of Amushe Hello Investment, Amushe Advertising and Design, Amushe International Holding, Van Der Walt Trailer Manufacturing, Amushelelo Family Trust and Global Growth Investment Namibia. They are also accused of facilitating the signing of investment deals with members of the public, after which members invest N$5,000 or more and in return get a 50% stake after a period of two to four months. . Alternatively, members of the public could invest N$2,500 over an eight-month period and receive N$12,654.25 at the end.

Court documents say the couple received N$17 million from members of the public intending to offer banking services.

According to the prosecution, Amushelelo and Cloete did so without being authorized to do so within the meaning of the law on banking institutions.