Revelations that four individuals have been reported to the Hawks over suspicious deals flagged by forensic auditors at Steinhoff International may be the first step in assigning accountability, but don’t get too excited just yet. These four individuals — former CEO Markus Jooste, former financial director Ben la Grange, ex-company secretary Stéhan Grobler and Steinhoff Europe’s Dirk Schreiber — appear to have been flagged by the PwC investigation, which is entering its final furlong. But for a variety of reasons, it’s unlikely that criminal charges will stick against all four of them. For starters, while the case against Jooste is understood to be backed by firm evidence, the case against La Grange is more tenuous. Here, insiders say, the story relates to a "buying group", which would supposedly negotiate discounts from overseas suppliers. In reality, it seems this external "buying group" was largely a fiction. Insiders say this supposedly independent "buying group" would borrow mo...

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