South Africa: Couple in Court on Wine Fraud Charges
A South African couple has been brought up on charges with respect to a claim on wine fraud. Kobus Terblanche, a former DGB executive (DGB is one of South Africa’s largest independent wine and spirits producers and distributors), and his wife had their passports seized upon their return to South Africa after a trip to Europe. “The Terblanches are accused of setting up ghost companies to export wine at inflated prices to clients they allegedly lured from DGB.” (See Couple in Court on Wine Fraud Charges.) Last year, DGB filed a civil suit against the couple for at least R12-million in damages. “Terblanche, who had worked for DGB for more than 20 years as export director and ultimately as the head of the company’s international division, allegedly used his position to divert wine orders placed by foreign clients.” (See Couple in Court on Wine Fraud Charges.)
One of the first targets, allegedly, was a Danish wine company. “Terblanche allegedly told clients that DGB ‘no longer wanted to supply bulk wine’ and the business would be taken over by a DGB subsidiary. He or his wife then allegedly created a bogus client within DGB called Bacco Trading, supposedly based in Italy.” (See Couple in Court on Wine Fraud Charges.) The court papers indicate that the Danish wine company apparently placed more than 26 orders with Bacco.