Brothers allegedly tried to smuggle R6m of contraband out of SA

Johannesburg - Two Chinese brothers face a litany of charges after allegedly attempting to bribe an official in a bid to smuggle diamonds, ivory and abalone worth R6m out of the country.

The duo is expected to appear in the Kempton Park and Pretoria magistrate's courts on Monday.

Hawks spokesperson Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi said a 48-year-old man was arrested after he allegedly offered an official R3 000 to check, process and authorise his brother's passport on Thursday.

Mulaudzi said the officer alerted the Hawks and an operation was conducted swiftly.

"The man was nabbed in the act of offering the bribe and subsequent investigations led the Hawks to the OR Tambo International Airport where the suspect's brother had already boarded the flight to Hong Kong," he said.

However, the flight had been delayed giving the Hawks enough "time to pounce on him".

The 36-year-old man was found in possession of a fraudulent passport. When authorities searched his bag polished diamonds, ivory, 10kg of wet abalone, a bag of dry abalone and a bag of ointment which requires a doctor's prescription were found. 

Mulaudzi said the brothers face charges of bribery, fraud, possession of diamonds, possession of ivory and possession of abalone.

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