Bribery accused Chinese duo want N$10 000 fine

Two  Chinese nationals charged with offering a N$ 4000 bribe to an investigating police agent for her to stop probing one of them have pleaded for a lighter fine of N$10 000 from the court.

The accused duo - Siyong Xu (55) and Huaifen Yang (54) work for New Era Construction company.

They were busted by Anti-Corruption Commission officials recently after allegedly attempting to stop investigations into money laundering involving N$1 million.
The state prosecutor has rejected the N$10 000 fine saying that, ideally, the nature of their crime called for either an N$500 000 fine, 25 years of jail or both.

The prosecutor thus pushed for the judge to have them slapped with an N$50 000 fine each or face four years in prison.
 He also wants the N$4 000 bribe money given over to the state, over and above these.

Said the prosecutor, “N$10 000 will not be appropriate. It trivialises the conduct of the accused. Acts of this nature should be rooted out to restore faith the public has in our institutions and protect innocent and vulnerable members.”
“These acts tarnish the reputation of public offices, affect the country and those found guilty will be punished by the court. These crimes are increasing in our society in spite of the punishments.”

He also went as far as stating that the two being foreigners had disrespected the laws of the country and their sentencing should help them reform and send a strong message to would-be offenders.

However, a lawyer for the two, Mbanga Siyomundji pleaded for them saying they had spent a good part of their lives as model citizens without any convictions.

He added that they had shown remorse, had not wasted the court’s time and the state’s resources by lengthening the trial, instead they pleaded guilty at the earliest.
 Xu is married with a 26-year-old daughter and works in Namibia under a permit earning a monthly salary of N$30 000.

Siyomundji said although he pleaded guilty, he had only assisted his colleague to meet and talk to the agent as an interpreter since he did not speak English.
Huaifen (55) is also married with a 30-year-old child and works in Namibia under a permit for a monthly salary of plus or minus N$30 000.

Meanwhile, their judgement will be pronounced this week by Friday.