Satinsky CEO sues customer for defamation
JOHANNESBURG – The CEO of Satinsky, the company taken to court over the R699 car sales scheme, is suing a customer for R1-million in defamation, the Business Times reported.
Albert Venter has served summons on Cornelia Maria Nel, an administrator of a Facebook page called “I have been done in by Drive a New Car from R699 per month.”
The group currently has 3,881 members and comprises South Africans from all walks of life who feel cheated by the scheme.
It’s tag line reads, “We are not the ones committing fraud…”
According to the newspaper, Nel is one of 29,000 customers who fell victim to Venter’s alleged car scheme. The customers were financed by Standard Bank, Nedbank and Absa for R2.8-billion.
The scheme offered to cut repayments on new cars to R699, if the motorists drove a minimum distance with pasted advertisements about the scheme on their cars.
The scheme collapsed in July and banks called for full repayments — amounts which were not affordable for those involved.
The Eastern Cape High Court in Port Elizabeth reserved judgment in the matter.
The Business Times reported that angry customers started the Facebook group.
Venter, in his claim, said the comments on the site were “false, wrongful and defamatory” and created the impression that he “improperly benefited” from the scheme.
One post that angered Venter said: “Venter is planning to flee South Africa to the Russian Federation”.
Nel allegedly asked members of the group to personally request a photo of Venter’s jet from her.
She posted: “We were threatened today regarding this photo by Albert Venter himself. Why is this aircraft such a secret?”
According to the newspaper, Nel suggested that Venter would use the aircraft to flee South Africa, and gave the geographical co-ordinates of his mansion, in Mooikloof, Pretoria.
The case would be heard in the High Court in Pretoria, but it was unclear when, the paper reported.
– Additional reporting Nonkululeko Ngqola.