Man who issued ‘expired food’ to SANDF during lockdown arrested
A 59-year-old man from Johannesburg appeared in the Pretoria Specialised Commercial Crimes Court on Monday for allegedly issuing expired food products to South African National Defence Force (SANDF) members deployed for Covid-19 lockdown duties.
Stephen Wallace Weir was charged with fraud, theft, forgery and uttering and contravention of the Food, Cosmetics and Disinfectants Act.
He was granted a R50,000 bail on Monday while his case was postponed till 25 November for a provisional trial date.
His company, SERAC MRE (Pty) Ltd was awarded the tender to supply food patrol ration packs during the lockdown to the SANDF but instead, he allegedly provided expired food packs to them.
This was done by placing stickers over the original expiry dates.
National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson, Lumka Mahanjana narrated in a statement on Monday:
“SERAC MRE (Pty) Ltd had to supply ready-to-eat food packs that complied with the National Regulator for Compulsory Specification Act that includes promoting public health and safety, environmental protection and ensuring fair trade,
“The company allegedly forged the dates in the boxes containing pre-packaged food rations by changing the labelling best before dates.”
“It covered the original expiry dates by placing stickers over them with a new date giving a misleading and or false description.”
Following police investigation, Weir was arrested on Monday.
“This was subsequent to video clips of SANDF members that surfaced during the lockdown showing the discrepancy of the dates,” Mahanjana said.
His court case was postponed to November 25 for a provisional trial date to be heard.
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