South Africa requests extradition of Gupta Brothers from UAE

Rajesh Gupta and Atul Gupta, brothers who face charges of political corruption under former South African president Jacob Zuma. /AP Photo

The South African government has submitted a formal extradition application to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for Rajesh Gupta and Atul Gupta but cautioned that the extradition process could take several months.

Rajesh Gupta and Atul Gupta, brothers who face charges of political corruption under former South African president Jacob Zuma. /AP Photo

The two brothers, along with their elder brother Ajay, are at the centre of a political corruption investigation linked to former president, Jacob Zuma. The Gupta brothers are accused in South Africa of using their relationship with Zuma to profit financially and influence senior appointments, charges that they have vehemently denied.

They have been living in exile in Dubai for the past three years and were arrested in June after Interpol issued a red notice for them.

The head of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), Shamila Batohi joined Justice and Correctional Services Minister, Ronald Lamola, on Monday at a media briefing to confirm that the NPA has submitted a formal extradition application

“The submission of the formal application request for the arrest and extradition of the Gupta brothers is an important milestone in the National Prosecuting Authority’s commitment to hold accountable perpetrators of state capture and to uphold the rule of law,” Batohi said. ” It reaffirms our resolve to be the lawyers for the people and to seek collective justice for our country.”

Batohi was also cautious about the Guptas being convicted, although she said that the NPA would attempt to ensure that justice would be served.

“We cannot guarantee of course that there will be a conviction, but what we can guarantee is that as the prosecuting authority we will do everything possible to ensure that the prospects of a successful prosecution and conviction are extremely high, that’s as far as we can take it.”

 

Story compiled with assistance from wire reports