The National Director of Public Prosecutions, Shamila Batohi, says they require financial evidence from the United Arab Emirates of members of the Gupta family who are wanted in South Africa on charges of corruption, money laundering and fraud.
The NPA’s Investigating Directorate issued warrants of arrests for the Guptas last week and asked Interpol for assistance to get them deported to South Africa.
Batohi says the suspects’ bank records will help them with their investigation into the corruption they allegedly committed in South Africa.
She says there will be legal processes with regards to the extradition.
“Hopefully once that [extradition] happens there would be legal processes with regard to the extradition of those persons. To put it simply that is essentially what it means. It means Interpol working to assisting and tracing these persons and the whereabouts have been established … work with the local authority to effect arrest,” explains Batohi.
Below is the full media briefing:
UAE not cooperating
At the same briefing, Justice and Correctional Services Minister Ronald Lamola revealed that the United Arab Emirates was not co-operating with South Africa, in accordance to the extradition treaty ratified by the two countries.
Despite the tussle, however, the Justice Department says South Africa and the United Arab Emirates have a strong and healthy relationship.
“We will only accept that there is full cooperation when we receive the necessary information that we have been requesting now for over three years without success. So as I say it is a positive development but we will only know that this is making a difference once our request for mutual legal assistance are fully executed by the UAE and we get the necessary cooperation including evidence from the UAE,” added Batohi.
Lamola says he hopes the UAE will reconsider it’s position on the extradition.
The agreement on extradition and legal assistance in criminal matters between South Africa and the UAE was signed in 2018.
Interpol arrest warrant for Guptas:
The Gupta name has become synonymous with accusations of state capture in SA. The family faces allegations of corruption at parastatals and provincial governments, to the tune of around R49 billion.
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