Published: Thu, February 15, 2018
Global | By Shelia Dennis

Arrests made as Hawks raid the Guptas

Arrests made as Hawks raid the Guptas

Zuma and the Guptas - a family of wealthy Indian-born businessmen - deny any wrongdoing.

Business Day quoted a "reliable" source in the Hawks who reportedly said, of Atul Gupta, "you bring that man, if you don't bring him now you must know that he will be regarded as a fugitive".

"Even though I disagree with the decision of the leadership of my organization, I have always been a disciplined member of the ANC", he said.

Onlookers gather in the street surrounding the compound
Onlookers gather in the street surrounding the compound

According to eNCA, sources have said that the raid is related to the Vrede dairy project in the Free State, where the Guptas have been accused of allegedly siphoning R220 million meant to benefit poor farmers.

News of the planned deals‚ which would require the family's lawyers to meet the Hawks on Wednesday‚ followed reports that President Jacob Zuma's son and Gupta business associate Duduzane Zuma was to hand himself over‚ with his lawyers‚ to the Hawks on Wednesday.

Police has confirmed other two members of the family to likely turn themselves in.

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Zuma, whose presidency has been marred by corruption scandals and economic decline, has been in a weakened position since he was replaced as leader of the ANC by Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa in December. "To us the law is blind, it does not matter who it is".

Shortly after dawn, a dozen Hawks police officers sealed off a street leading to the Gupta mansion in Johannesburg's upscale Saxonwold suburb.

Of the R220 million budgeted for the project, only 1% - about R2.4 million - went into the actual farm project.

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A police officer at the compound blocked off access to Saxonwold Drive, saying: "This is a crime scene".

He failed to comment on reports that he would hand himself over to the HawksSources close to the Guptas and with knowledge on the raids and their apparent looming arrests said moves were under way to get some sort of deal signed. "They have done enough damage", said Tessa Turvey, head of the local residents' association, standing outside the compound's iron gates.

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