Hawks officer fined after ‘disappearing’ with R30 000 meant for sting operation

A Hawks employee has been found guilty of stealing R30 000, which was earmarked for use in a sting operation.

Warrant Officer Eugene Marshall Grace,  44, was convicted in the Springbok Magistrate’s Court and sentenced to a fine of R12 000 or two years imprisonment on Thursday.

The Northern Cape officer was found to have pocketed funds set aside for a covert operation, in which he was involved, said Hawks spokesperson Nomthandazo Mnisi.

“Grace was part of a covert operation during August 2021 whereby an amount of R50 000 was withdrawn from the state account to be used in the sting. During the sting operation, only R20 000 was used and the remainder, as expected, was supposed to be returned,” said Mnisi.

However, Grace booked off sick after the operation, “disappeared with the remaining R30 000 and used it for his own personal gain”, said Mnisi

After various attempts were made to trace him, the Hawks took the decision to open a case.

“A tracing team led by the Hawks’ Serious Organised Crime Investigation team, was immediately formulated to search for Grace. The team managed to track and arrest him in and around Springbok on 9 September,” said Mnisi.

During his arrest, R11 000 was seized, she added.