Suspected ISIS members hide out in Ballito

Sugarman

Making Sugar
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Feb 24, 2016
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#1
A couple suspected of being connected to the terrorist group ISIS is believed to have been camping out in Ballito on an on-and-off basis.

The Hawks Crimes Against the State Unit, Durban Serious Organised Crime Unit and Durban Crime Intelligence KZN are investigating Sayfydeen Aslam Del Vecchio (38) and Fatima Patel (27) for their possible involvement in the kidnapping of two South African-Britons on February 12.

The kidnapping is suspected to have been taken place near Bivane dam, Vryheid in KwaZulu-Natal.

Hawks spokesperson for the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation, brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi, said Patel and Vecchio are facing charges of kidnapping, robbery and arson as they are accused of setting alight several hectares of canefields in 2017 worth R2 million at Tongaat-Hulett plantations.

“They are also facing possible violation of Protection Constitutional Democracy Against Terrorists and Other Related Activities (POCDATARA). The Priority Crime Litigation Unit (PCLU) from is providing assistance with the prosecution.”

The accused appeared briefly at Vryheid Magistrate Court on Monday. They are expected to appear again on March 1 for a formal application.

“The Hawks are exploring all lines of inquiry and cannot comment further while the investigation is ongoing. More arrests are imminent,” Mulaudzi.
https://northcoastcourier.co.za/103373/suspected-isis-members-hide-ballito/
 

schumi

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19,395
#9
Third arrest in kidnapping of business owners by alleged terrorists

Durban – A 23-year-old man was arrested in KwaZulu-Natal on Monday morning, in connection with the alleged abduction of Cape Town husband and wife botanists and business owners, Rachel Saunders, 64, and Rodney Saunders, 73, the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (known as the Hawks) said.

Hawks spokesperson, Captain Lloyd Ramovha, told African News Agency (ANA) on Monday afternoon that the suspect was arrested in the Endlovini area and would appear in the Mtunzini Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday.

Ramovha said the couple was yet to be located.

“The search is ongoing. We have a dedicated team [in the KZN area] that is working around the clock,” Ramovha said.

“We arrested a third suspect this morning, a male, in the Endlovini area of KZN. He is 23. He will appear in Mtunzini Magistrate’s Court tomorrow.”

The suspect was charged with possession of stolen property and “he is also charged with the same charges as [Sayfydeen Aslam Del Vecchio and Bibi Fatima Patel], which is kidnapping,” according to Ramovha.

According to the charge sheet for Del Vecchio and Patel, they are facing charges of kidnapping, robbery, theft and terrorism.
More at: https://www.iol.co.za/news/south-af...usiness-owners-by-alleged-terrorists-13496537
 

schumi

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#11
Couple still missing as third suspect is arrested in KZN kidnapping 'terrorism' case

Cape Town – A couple from Cape Town, who are internationally known in the horticulture industry, are still missing despite a third suspect having been arrested in connection with their disappearance in KwaZulu-Natal two weeks ago in a case with possible links to the Islamic State (ISIS) group.

Rod and Rachel Saunders, who have both South African and British citizenship, were apparently kidnapped at or near the Bivane Dam in Vryheid, KwaZulu-Natal, on February 12.

It is understood the couple, who run a Cape Town-based seed company, had been in search of a rare flowering plant.

The apparent kidnapping has made news headlines in the UK with several publications reporting it is feared the couple have been kidnapped by ISIS members.

Two of three suspects arrested so far in the case face charges for possibly contravening the Protection of Constitutional Democracy Against Terrorist and Related Activities Act.

The couple's disappearance prompted the UK government to warn its citizens in South Africa that there was a terror threat from extremists linked to ISIS.

The South African government has since written to the High Commission of the UK government requesting it to review this travel advisory.

On Tuesday Hawks spokesperson Captain Lloyd Ramovha confirmed to News24 that a third suspect, a 19-year-old, had been arrested.

He faced charges of possessing suspected stolen property and kidnapping.

The suspect was expected to appear in the Verulam Magistrate's Court on Wednesday.

Two other suspects – Sayfydeen Aslam Del Vecchio, 38, and Fatima Patel, 27 – were arrested after being identified as suspects in the case on February 16.

Kidnapping, robbery and arson charges

Charges against them include kidnapping or robbery, as well as the possible contravention of the Protection of Constitutional Democracy against Terrorist and Related Activities Act.

The duo also face an arson charge for allegedly torching and destroying hectares of sugar cane fields in 2017.

Patel has been arrested before. She and her brother, Ebrahim Patel, were arrested at their home in Azaadville in 2016 during police raids on the West Rand.

These raids also led to the arrest of Brandon-Lee and Tony-Lee Thulsie, who are allegedly linked to the ISIS group.

Based on online and social media posts, the Saunders were likely in KwaZulu-Natal in search of a rare plant species.

On February 8, four days before they were apparently kidnapped, Nick Bailey, a presenter on the BBC show Gardeners' World, tweeted a photograph of himself with the couple.

"These guys know their South African native plants...and vitally where to find them," he tweeted.

Three days earlier, Bailey tweeted: "No filter, just the Drakensburg Mountains in all their 5am glory. Off plant hunting today in pursuit of some rare gladioli. Can't wait! (sic)"

The Kogelberg Botanical Society website posted a notice earlier this year announcing that the Saunders' would be speaking on gladioli in Betty's Bay in the Western Cape on January 20.

"A number of them grow in the summer rainfall regions of South Africa, and a number of them flower in midsummer," it said.

Couple only had one more plant to find

"Rod and Rachel have visited the Drakensberg four years running to try to find several species that flower in December in the mountains. As of today, they have found and photographed 164 of the South African species, and only have one left to find – Gladiolus uitenhagensis which comes from close to Port Elizabeth."

According to a website, they own the Cape Town company Silverhill Seeds, which is based in Kenilworth.

"Silverhillseeds.co.za is an independent company owned by Rod and Rachel Saunders," the company's website says.

The Pacific Bulb Society website provided details about the couple.

"Throughout much of the year they travel around South Africa collecting seeds. Rod is the former chairman of the Indigenous Bulb Association of South Africa, a first-rate photographer, and a popular speaker," it said.


News24
https://www.news24.com/SouthAfrica/...ted-in-kzn-kidnapping-terrorism-case-20180227
 
Joined
Nov 14, 2007
Messages
3,812
#12
WHY

Can someone -- anyone please explain WHY ISIS would / should / or could be interested in these people ?
One can understand the normal SA crime of rape , robbery , and violent murder as being the normal fare these days

WHAT did these folks have -- that was more interesting than the normal criminal fare ?

Were they perhaps agents of British Imperialism ??????
 
Joined
Jan 7, 2010
Messages
41,668
#13
Can someone -- anyone please explain WHY ISIS would / should / or could be interested in these people ?
One can understand the normal SA crime of rape , robbery , and violent murder as being the normal fare these days

WHAT did these folks have -- that was more interesting than the normal criminal fare ?

Were they perhaps agents of British Imperialism
??????
You may have a point. These aren't the first Brits who were kidnapped or murdered here. Why would there be ISIS operatives in such backwater areas in SA? Is some kind of ploy by the British government to create a terror-related crime?
 
Joined
Nov 14, 2007
Messages
3,812
#14
In Extremis

You may have a point. These aren't the first Brits who were kidnapped or murdered here. Why would there be ISIS operatives in such backwater areas in SA? Is some kind of ploy by the British government to create a terror-related crime?
Perhaps
Because there are in fact ISIS training camps / resources in SA
and
The SA gov is not doing much about it
and
The Brits have to send their OWN people to do the work that the SA authorities should be doing
 

schumi

Honorary Master
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19,395
#15

Large sums of money drained from account of missing couple


Cell phones stolen from abducted Britons Rod and Rachel Saunders - found in the possession of Eshowe teenager Themba Xulu - are expected to help police decode the circumstances around their kidnapping.

The latter two accused remain at the centre of the high-level probe‚ facing charges related to terrorism.

The Saunders‚ who have lived in Cape Town for a number of years‚ remain missing

Patel‚ Del Vecchio and Xulu stand accused of siphoning R700‚000 from the elderly couple’s bank accounts.

Jewellery‚ electronics and camping gear were also purchased using stolen credit cards . State Advocate Adele Barnard told the court that Xulu would face charges of kidnapping‚ robbery with aggravating circumstances and theft‚ the latter relating to money drained from the Saunders’ accounts.

She revealed that large amounts of blood were found in the back of the couple’s stolen car which was recovered by police last week.

“We are still waiting on the forensics report [as to whose blood it is] so the charges in this matter may change to murder‚” she said.

She added that two cellphones‚ one which was found in Xulu’s possession and a second which was later handed to investigators‚ were likely used to make internet bank transfers.

He had‚ at one point‚ inserted his own sim card into both of the cell phones.
More at: https://www.timeslive.co.za/politic...-third-accused-in-missing-briton-couple-case/
 

schumi

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#16
‘It's my fault couple are missing’

Durban - One of the last people to see kidnapped British botanists Rod and Rachel Saunders alive blames himself for their Isis-linked abduction which he fears has led to their deaths.

“I feel incredibly guilty because I told them to go down to Ngoye Forest,” said Big Banana Films producer Robin Matthews, who spent three days filming and getting to know the Saunders couple who collect and catalogue indigenous plants for their Kenilworth-based business, Silverhill Seeds.

“It’s a birders’ and botanists’ paradise,” said Matthews, a University of Zululand BSc Zoology Honours graduate who lived in nearby Mtunzini and knows KZN’s Ngoye Forest region well.

“I’ve been there many times and after working with Rod and Rachel, I knew they would love it.

“But their love of plants and nature is what got them into trouble. And that’s hard to swallow.

“Because even though I know I could not have predicted Isis suspects were living there, I still feel responsible for sending them there.”
More at: https://www.iol.co.za/news/south-africa/kwazulu-natal/its-my-fault-couple-are-missing-13575665
 

schumi

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#17
Kidnappers of UK couple discussed plans to 'kill the kuffar'

Durban – An affidavit in the alleged kidnapping case of missing Cape-based botanists, Rodney and Rachel Saunders, reveals chilling details of an alleged premeditated murder plot and collusion in disposing of their bodies.

While the couple has yet to be found, this is the first indication that the duel South African-British passport holders may no longer be alive, although technically they are still considered missing by South African authorities.

Sayefudeen Del Vecchio, 37, and Fatima Patel, 27, who are married under traditional Islamic law, and 19-year-old Thembamandla Xulu -- who lived with the couple -- have been charged with the alleged kidnapping, assault and robbery of the Saunders, who were last heard from on February 8.

Del Vecchio and Patel, who were arrested on February 15, at their homestead near Mtunzini just 130km north of Durban, are also facing terrorism charges. Xulu was arrested on February 26.

The trio appeared in the Verulam Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday for formal bail application.

An affidavit filed by investigative officer, Detective Warrant Officer Anuresh Lutchman, who is based in the Crimes Against the State Unit within the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (known as the Hawks), shows he opposed bail on several grounds.
More at: https://www.iol.co.za/news/south-af...e-discussed-plans-to-kill-the-kuffar-13627042
 

schumi

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19,395
#19

Terror suspect moved from Westville Prison to C-Max in secret transfer


A threat to Durban’s Westville prison is thought to have prompted the secretive move of terror suspect and alleged Isis acolyte Sayfydeen Aslam del Vecchio to Kokstad’s Ebongweni “C-Max” prison last week.

The Verulam regional court heard on Thursday that 38-year-old Del Vecchio had been hastily shifted to the secure and isolated facility‚ unbeknownst to his legal team‚ prosecutors or Hawks investigators.

The facility is South Africa’s only super-maximum security prison and is regarded as one of the most secure in the southern hemisphere.

Located in the southern reaches of the province‚ the prison is home to some of the country’s most dangerous criminals.

There are no communal cells and offenders spend 23 hours a day locked behind solid metal doors — and when they do leave the cells‚ their shackles are never removed. The cells are underground‚ with the surface housing offices and other administrative buildings. If a prisoner makes an attempt at escape‚ the intricate security web around the facility is likely to put a swift end to it.

Del Vecchio’s mysterious move was highlighted by defence advocate Jay Naidoo‚ who said that his client had been moved without any notification.

Prison authorities claimed‚ he said‚ that the move came after a request from the prosecution team. “We have not been able to consult with our client and prepare an application for bail. It is highly inconvenient because it takes three hours to travel there from Durban‚” he said.

State advocate Adele Barnard refuted this‚ saying that they too had been unaware of Del Vecchio’s move to the maximum security facility. She said that “speculation” around the reason for the move‚ conveyed to the investigating officer by Correctional Services officials‚ was that Del Vecchio’s presence compromised the safety and security of Westville prison.

Magistrate Vallaraman Kathuravaloo denied an application by Naidoo to order that Del Vecchio be rehoused at Westville‚ saying that the discretion of prisoner placement rested with the Department of Correctional Services. He and his co-accused‚ Fatima Patel and Themba Xulu‚ are alleged to have masterminded the abduction of missing Cape Town couple Rod and Rachel Saunders.
More at: https://www.timeslive.co.za/news/so...westville-prison-to-c-max-in-secret-transfer/
 

schumi

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#20

Zululand teen denied bail in missing couple and terror cell mystery


An Mtunzini teenager who stands accused of having had a hand in the abduction and disappearance of Britons Rod and Rachel Saunders will remain behind bars until the culmination of his trial.

Themba Xulu’s application for bail was denied by magistrate Vallaraman Kathuravaloo in the Verulam Regional Court on Thursday.

The British couple‚ who have lived in Cape Town for a number of years‚ remain missing nearly six weeks after they disappeared in northern KwaZulu-Natal.

Xulu‚ 19‚ and his co-accused Fatima Patel and Sayfydeen Aslam del Vecchio‚ are alleged to have kidnapped the couple‚ stolen their car and drained more than R700 000 from their bank accounts.

The latter two accused remain at the centre of the high-level terror probe‚ facing charges related to an alleged association with terror organisation Isis.

The learner‚ who was represented by Legal Aid attorney Mondli Mthethwa‚ is charged with theft‚ kidnapping and robbery with aggravating circumstances.
More at: https://www.timeslive.co.za/news/so...il-in-missing-couple-and-terror-cell-mystery/
 
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