Article published by the George Herald

Danie Acker – liquidator

GEORGE NEWS – Labelled “a massive breakthrough” for 350 Niflas investors, Judge Nathan Erasmus delivered a scathing Section 424 judgement and court order in the High Court in George on Tuesday 10 March.

He declared the by now infamous, George based, former Niflas owners, Pieter and Carina Strydom, their family trust and director Jan Mostert, personally liable for the debt of the entire Niflas Silhouette Platform group of companies.

The application was brought by Danie Acker, one of the joint liquidators of Niflas, who is now in the process of issuing warrants of execution against all the respondents. The Sheriff has been instructed to attach all the assets they own.

Pieter Strydom is the founder and former CEO of Niflas, the George-based financial institution that lost more than R150-million of their clients’ money through reckless and completely non-viable investments and ventures. Jan Mostert was a Niflas director and financial adviser.

Pieter Strydom – Niflas

Carina, Strydom’s wife, was a co-director of Niflas and now works at a financial company in George that started trade under a Financial Services Provider (FSP) number belonging to Niflas Risk 800 Holdings. Roadmap Financial Services is registered in the name of a former Niflas employee, Chrismare Botha.

Both Pieter Strydom and Mostert have been debarred.

Underhand dealings
Hundreds of people – mostly elderly residents of the Southern Cape – lost their life savings when Niflas went bankrupt in 2015. The so-called Niflas “investments” include a high-risk investment of R60-million in the ill-fated micro lender Bridge Corporate, a farm near Murraysburg, apartments in Swellendam, Grahamstown and George – where Pieter’s children stayed – and his sister’s crèche in Humansdorp.

During the proceedings Judge Erasmus warned the respondents’ council, Advocate Tinus Lotz, that he should take care which line of argument he took, as his clients’ actions at Niflas amounted to “organised crime”.

In his judgement Erasmus said he is restrained in his comments on the nature of the misrepresentations made by the respondents, as it may impact on the potential criminal case.

He said it is clear from the facts that the respondents were involved in underhand dealings to benefit themselves and their extended family.

Carina Strydom – Niflas

Dig deep for millions
Acker said he will go all out to recoup as much of investors’ money as possible. “I cannot let this go. Too great an injustice has been done. When I met Pieter Strydom back in 2015 he asked me what I wanted. I said: ‘Either R150-million or everything you own.’

“This ruling by the judge gives us the power to dig deep. The respondents’ financial dealings through the years will be unearthed.”

Acker said should it be found that their assets have been:

  • disposed of without value;
  • or in a way giving preference to certain creditors;
  • or if transactions were found to be in collusion with another person,the liquidators will have the option to apply for the sequestration of their estates.

Jan Mostert – Niflas

“Sequestration will also allow the appointed trustees to investigate the respondents’ personal transactions and flow of funds. If it is established that someone else is party to such collusive disposition, the other person will be forced to pay back the benefit he or she had received. In addition to that such sum, the court may rule that the collaborator pay back double the benefit received. In such an event the person shall also forfeit his claim against the estate,” said Acker.

He has managed to recover and pay out almost R30-million of investors’ money. R60-million is still invested in Bridge shares, now worth less than R1-million, and Acker is eager to recover a further potential R60-million.

The case is being investigated by the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (Hawks). No comment from any of the respondents or their lawyer was received at the time of going to print.


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