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Legalbrief   |   your legal news hub Friday 13 December 2019

US virologist facing R25m fraud charge

Zimbabwe-born US citizen, virologist and SA branch chief at the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, Dr Alfred Bere, has appeared in the Cape Town Magistrate’s Court on a charge of fraud involving R25m. A Daily Maverick report notes the charges are related to the mismanagement of donor funding to the South African Clothing and Textile Workers Union’s Worker Health Programme. The alleged fraud has jeopardised the future of the programme as well as the jobs of several hundred employees of the initiative. Bere was arrested by the Hawks on 25 August in Musina, allegedly as he attempted to flee SA in order to evade the charges. Bere appeared briefly last week for a bail application that was postponed to 12 September. The virologist has been in custody since his arrest by the Hawks near the Zimbabwe border.