Man arrested for issuing 'expired food' to SANDF during lockdown

A man appeared in the Pretoria Specialised Commercial Crimes Court on Monday after his company allegedly issued expired food rations to South African National Defence Force (SANDF) members deployed for Covid-19 lockdown duties.

The company allegedly changed the best before dates of pre-packaged food rations, by putting stickers over the original expiry dates.

Stephen Wallace Weir, 59, from Dainfern in Fourways, Johannesburg, was released on R50,000 bail after he appeared in court on charges of fraud, theft, forgery and uttering and the contravention of the Food, Cosmetics and Disinfectants Act.

His company, SERAC MRE (Pty) Ltd, received a department of defence tender to supply food patrol ration packs to various divisions of the SANDF during Covid-19 lockdown deployment.

SERAC MRE (Pty) Ltd had to supply ready-to-eat food packs that complied with the National Regulator for Compulsory Specification Act, including promoting public health and safety, environmental protection and ensuring fair trade, said National Prosecuting Authority spokesperson Lumka Mahanjana.

Weir was arrested on Monday.

"This was subsequent to video clips of SANDF members that surfaced during the lockdown showing the discrepancy of the dates," said Mahanjana.

The matter was postponed to 25 November for a provisional trial date.

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