Attorney’s arrest causes distress for well-known attorney with the same surname

Cerneels Lourens

The arrest of a former Brits attorney, Louis Lourens, for fraud in December last year has caused another well-known attorney, with the same surname, some distress as people have confused the two.

Cerneels Lourens, who has been practising for more than 30 years under the name Lourens Attorneys in Brits, said this week that he had received unpleasant enquiries whether he was the fraudster. In a statement, Cerneels Lourens said he wants to put the record straight that there is and was no connection in any way with, Louis Lourens, who was arrested and people should not confuse the two. Cerneels Lourens is known countrywide as an attorney with a special interest in language rights.

Louis Lourens (47) was arrested by the Hawks Serious Commercial Crime Investigation of the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation on 11 December 2019, for alleged fraud.

“Louis Lourens is facing eight counts of fraud after he allegedly swindled money from community members by claiming to assist them with purchasing properties. Instead of fulfilling his promise, the accused allegedly used the funds (allegedly over R million) for his own benefit,” said Hawks spokesperson, Captain Tlangelani Rikhotso.

He was released on R2 000 bail by the Brits Magistrate’s Court on Thursday, 20 December 2019 and the case has been postponed to 7 February 2020 for further investigation.

Louis Lourens was struck off the roll of attorneys in 2015 due to alleged irregularities with clients’ money.