Exposed! Ronald Bobroff taking SA cases
Elaine Bobroff, wife of lawyer under-investigation, Ronald Bobroff, is believed to have joined her husband and son Darren and his family in Australia where the Bobroff father and son personal injury lawyers high-tailed it to six months ago when the heat was turned on them in South Africa for alleged Road Accident Fund transgressions.
It is not clear whether Elaine – who was originally charged with fraud and money laundering of millions of rand but the charges against her had been dropped – will return to South Africa.
New reports surfaced this week that the suspended Bobroff father and son may have continued to take on new cases in South Africa, while living in Australia.
RIGHT:Elaine Bobroff – in Australia with family
This week Moneyweb published an exclusive story on how the agency had trapped Ronald Bobroff – whose website is still running – and showed the paper-trail they had used to entrap him. A fictitious enquiry was sent via the Robert Bobroff and Partners website (which the Law Society says should not exist) by a fictitious new claimant Moneyweb had set up, called “Mandi Lottering”.
The fake mail-trail led a Bobroff family member who replied. The next mail came from Ronald himself, typed all in capitals – so possibly written by him personally – in which he tells her how she should act and says that another well-known Johannesburg attorney would contact her. This lawyer has since denied any involvement.
But the Law Society of the Northern Provinces (LSNP) is not taking the new Moneyweb revelations lying down. Thinus Grobler, director of the LSNP, said this week: “The Law Society has, with concern, noted the facts relating to the continued use of the Ronald Bobroff & Partners website by suspended attorneys, Ronald and Darren Bobroff.”
Grobler added: “This issue will certainly be followed up by the Law Society in liaison with the curator (of the company).”
While a slew of investigations is said to have revealed over R1 billion in “misappropriated, missing or underpaid funds to clients” and “massive tax evasion, fraud and money-laundering” charges are being consolidated, the investigations are far from over yet.
Estelle Veldsman, an attorney who works on members’ affairs at the LSNP, has been appointed spokesman on the Bobroff case. Asked about the new allegations that the Bobroffs are practising, using their website and seemingly being assisted by local parties, Veldsman told Jewish Report on Tuesday: “We have addressed enquiries in this regard and getting legal advice.”
She said that winding up the Bobroff matter was a massive task. A dedicated curators’ team at the LSNP have the experience and the manpower to do so, but the curators were still receiving between 120 and 180 e-mails a day. “We have had over 4 600 e-mails since mid-July” she said, “and that does not even include the phone calls.”
Veldsman says the Bobroff father-and-son pair were not allowed to act as attorneys in South Africa as they are currently suspended from the roll of attorneys.
The Bobroffs were the subject of a long-running case which attempted to have them disbarred when, just prior to Easter, they did a runner to Australia – after telling the Hawks investigative unit they would hand themselves over to them for questioning, after the weekend.
The judgment against them was already being considered when the pair absconded, says Veldsman, but on March 23 the LSNP brought an urgent application to have the business placed under the control of an LSNP-appointed curator.
On April 26, the order suspending the Bobroffs from the Roll of Attorneys was granted and the “Striking off Application” has been set down for a hearing on December 6.
A slew of strange events followed Jewish Report’s publication of the story last week on Paul O’Sullivan’s trial for having kidnapped the original whistle-blower in the Bobroff matter. One was the story was very widely tweeted, including by the whistle-blower herself. Another was an attempt by someone with an Australian IP address trying to pass themselves off as the chairman of the Board of Deputies. The third, which JR Online is currently verifying the veracity of, was an e-mail from an Australian correspondent called “tipoffaus” with details of a R28-million house that the Bobroffs have apparently just purchased in Australia. SAJR cannot confirm this information today – but watch this space as we second-source the information.
SEE ALL PREVIOUS POSTS RELATING
TO THE BOBROFFS ON JR-ONLINE