IANS | 17 Jan, 2018
Parliament on Tuesday hailed an ongoing process to serve a summon on the Indian
Gupta family and freeze its assets to the tune of 1.6 billion rand ($130 million).
This came after the Asset Forfeiture Unit (AFU) started the process to serve a
summon on the Guptas and freeze its assets, Xinhua reported.
This process should continue "without fear or favour", said Mathole
Motshekga, Chairperson of Parliament's Portfolio Committee on Justice and
The AFU applied for three separate orders at the High Court in Pretoria as well
as the High Court in Bloemfontein last month, and the ex-parte applications
seeking orders to freeze the Guptas' assets have been granted.
The applications were brought in terms of the Prevention of Organised Crime
Act, which allows assets of defendants in criminal cases, or people who have
yet to be criminally charged to be preserved pending the outcome of their
prosecution. After they have been successfully prosecuted, the assets are then
permanently forfeited to the state.
Investigators have assured that no stone will be left unturned to ensure that
criminals are stopped in their tracks and that they do not benefit from the
proceeds of such criminal activities, Motshekga said.
"Criminals must know that the law will deal with them in all respects in
the harshest possible way. Nobody is above the law," said Motshekga.
At least 14 people and two companies have been identified in the case involving
the controversial Gupta family.
The Gupta-linked Trillian company and international consultancy giant McKinsey
reportedly were sommoned on Tuesday by the AFU, which is under the National
Prosecution Authority (NPA).
The Guptas are being investigated for its alleged collaboration with President
Jacob Zuma and a number of senior government officials in looting the state
coffers, through the awarding of lucrative contracts with state-owned
enterprises to Gupta-linked families, known as state capture.
Both the Guptas and Zuma have denied the accusation.