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Bobroffs flee to Oz, Bobba left to carry can

  • Bobroff fallout logo
While husband Ronald & son Darren fled to Australia last weekend accused of fleecing South Africans of millions, 68-year-old Bobba Elaine was left to carry the can. She was arrested in the early hours of Tuesday morning and appeared in the Johannesburg Specialised Commercial Crimes Court, charged with fraud of R26 mil and money laundering. The Hawks say at least R79 mil is missing. READ THE TRUE AND REAL STORY EXCLUSIVELY ON JR Online. Forget about all the figures being bandied about in the media. SAJR has had the real story, all the way!
by ANT KATZ | Mar 23, 2016

Elaine Bobroff, 68, wife and mother of personal injury attorneys, Ronald and son Darren, was arrested in the early hours of Tuesday morning and appeared in the Johannesburg Specialised Crimes Court the same afternoon, on charges of fraud of R26 million and money laundering.

Bobroff - Elaine1The arrest came in the wake of the father and son team (along with Darren’s wife Lisa and their children) skipping the country after they had been sued by road accident victims who had laid complaints against the personal injury specialists over a number of years. Allegations were made that the Bobroffs substantially overcharged contingency fees on the monies recovered by their firm, Ronald Bobroff & Sons, from the Road Accident Fund (RAF).


RIGHT: Elaine Bobroff is said to be an unassuming and tireless communal worker - now she is enmeshed in a huge fraud and money laundering scheme

The matter eventually landed up in the High Court in Pretoria, where the Bobroffs admitted that a contingency fee agreement they got some of their clients to sign, was illegal and they were due to hand themselves over to the police in this regard this week. Instead, the two - plus the younger Bobroff’s family - fled to Australia over the weekend.

Despite much speculation being bandied about in the media on Wednesday, Hawks spokesman Major Robert Netshiunda told Jewish Report that the entire amount of fraud so far suspected is R79 million and that the Hawks intended charging Ronald, Darren and Lisa for the remaining amount.

He insisted the Bobroffs would be brought back to South Africa to stand trial.

STORY CONTINUES BELOW PICTURE...

Bobroff - Ronald - FULL INDEPENDENT MEDIA
ABOVE: Ronald Bobroff adjusts his glasses in court - The Hawks plan to bring him - and his son Darren, PICTURED BELOW, home to face the music



Asked if the South African authorities were going to seek direct extradition or the return of the three fugitives through Interpol, Major Netshiunda would not disclose their strategy. “We are going to follow right procedures to get our suspects,” he said.

Bobroff - DarrenElaine Bobroff was released on R50 000 bail, and her bail conditions were that she had to hand in her travel documents and report to a police station once a week until her return date of July 1. Any figures estimating the fraud other than those disclosed to Jewish Report on Tuesday, are incorrect, he added.



Sold their practice beforehand

The Bobroffs sold their practice to attorneys Taitz and Skikne before leaving. CapeTalk's Kieno Kammies speaking to Ronald Bobroff from Australia on Monday who confirmed his wife had been arrested.

The Bobroffs have been in and out of court against clients, the Law Society (Ronald once chaired the local chapter) and have been fighting a whopping case with Discovery Health, South Africa’s largest medical aid, over the past several years.

Bobroff website


RIGHT: Taitz and Skikne Attorneys have bought what remains of the Bobroffs' practice

Discovery Health has argued that Bobroff’s were claiming medical fees from the Road Accident Fund (RAF) on behalf of clients and then advising some clients not to refund Discovery. In fact, in 2014 Ronald Bobroff threatened to sue Discovery Health, claiming that Discovery had a “vendetta” against him.

Bobroff’s created a 24-page document, “A shocking discovery for Discovery” which the firm distributed to all attorneys and advocates in South Africa, alleging that Discovery did not cover members injured in vehicle accidents, an allegation Discovery Health CEO Dr Jonathan Broomberg strenuously denied.

Broomberg said Discovery had paid our more than R2 billion for medical treatment of members injured in vehicle accidents between 2006 and 2014.

Bobroff - ronald and Elaine


LEFT: Ronald and Elaine Bobroff in happier times

The Road Accident Fund had never refused to pay for treatment, he said, and did not force members to submit RAF claims after an accident.

But, said Broomberg, if members did submit RAF claims and received pay-outs, Discovery expected them to refund the scheme expenses it had incurred.

This spat between Discovery and Bobroff’s followed a complaint which hinged on refunding medical expenses that Ronald Bobroff had lodged against Discovery regarding a 2006 accident.

The client was a former Discovery employee who had signed an undertaking after his accident that he would submit a claim to the RAF and if successful, refund to Discovery the pay-out for medical expenses.

Bobroff’s also undertook to refund Discovery, but both reneged and Bobroff took Discovery to the Commission for Medical Schemes which, in October 2011, handed down a comprehensive ruling in favour of Discovery.


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2 Comments

  1. 2 Marian 26 Mar
    Dear Ant Katz, reporters and editors are meant to be impartial. Your post on Facebook about Elaine Bobroff's innocence was anything but impartial. No one can deny that she is a lovely woman and a staunch community worker but the question of whether she was or wasn't complicit in her husband's nefarious activities is a moot point. It was reported that some R53 million made its way through her personal account. How could she have remained completely unaware of it? Additionally at the outset of the Bobroff - Discovery feud in the press, when a former bookkeeper employed by Ronald's firm reported unscheduled sums of money going into both Ronald and Darren Bobroff's bank accounts, Elaine is alleged to have called the bookkeeper to tell her that 'everyone does it.'
    Ant, the unterster here is that regardless of whether Elaine is innocent or guilty of the money laundering charges, those of us that know her and feel that the brunt of what Ronald and Darren have done has been unjustifiably dumped on her, should most definitely call and offer our support. With a schedule 5 offence hanging over her head, she certainly needs it. 

    Please understand that my Facebook posts are my personal view. I do not have to be impartial in my own social media space and don't reflect the SAJR. Having said that, they do reflect on my personal integrity and so I am wary of making aspersions on FB and Twitter that are out of line.
    I certainly never even gave a hint at a personal opinion on FB as to whether I thought she was innocent or guilty. That would have been out of line.
    I agree wholeheartedly with your last two paragraphs having spoken to her several times privately and off the record over the weekend


  2. 1 nat cheiman 27 Mar
    Ant, well said. May I add that on Marians own statement ( above), "It was reported that some R53 million made its way through her personal account"and "Elaine is alleged to have called the bookkeeper........", these statements, if true ( and I have no doubt will be backed up by the bookkeeper, in her oral evidence against Elaine,)will prove to be significant to the extent that she will be a socius criminis.( aiding and abetting). Also,I ( with utmost respect) dispute that Ronald and Darren  "dumped " all of this on her. Their decampment was carefully planned and it is unlikely that living together, she was ignorant.
    That said, INNOCENT OR GUILTY, the Jewish Community ought to extend a hand with the ultimate degree of care and compassion.

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