South African prosecutors want the United Arab Emirates government to lock down R169 million which they argue was stolen and transferred out of South Africa by the Gupta family, the City Press reports.
According to the report, this follows “an order granted this week by the high court in Bloemfontein in favour of the Asset Forfeiture Unit, increasing the preservation order first granted in January to R250 million”.
This money is related to the failed Estina dairy project in Vrede, Free State, which was allegedly looted by the Gupta family and their associates.
Citing a senior prosecutor working close to the case, City Press said the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) was confident that authorities in Dubai would cooperate.
Guptas on the run
Last month the Sunday Times reported that despite denials from the authorities, arrest warrants have been issued for Atul and Tony Gupta.
In February, reports suggested the Gupta brothers were on the run, and that the Hawks issued arrest warrants for the brothers and Duduzane Zuma.
The SABC reported that Interpol has also been roped in to track down Atul and Tony Gupta, after the Hawks were unable to serve warrants of arrest.
According to the report, Atul and Tony Gupta were out of the country when the warrants were issued – likely in India or Dubai.
Ajay Gupta has also been declared a fugitive from justice. This comes after he failed to hand himself over – despite his lawyers telling the Hawks he will do so.
Lieutenant-General Yolisa Matakata of the Hawks confirmed that a warrant of arrest has been issued for Ajay Gupta.
The arrest warrant is not in connection with the Vrede dairy farm project, but another corruption case – reportedly attempted bribery of former deputy finance minister Mcebisi Jonas.