Guptas' military vehicle removed

Johannesburg - An armoured military vehicle believed to belong to the Gupta family was spirited away from their Saxonwold home in the dead of night on Sunday.

Several Twitter users posted pictures and videos of an armoured vehicle being driven through the streets of the Johannesburg suburb.

The vehicle was put on a flatbed trailer and moved elsewhere, Netwerk24 reported.

The Gupta family’s lawyer, Gert van der Merwe, could not be reached for comment on Monday morning.

Van der Merwe earlier confirmed to Rapport that the vehicle was the family’s private property. He said it was being used for security purposes, "in agreement with the security company [protecting the home]".

Friday’s anti-Zuma protests outside the house indicated a possible security risk for his clients, he said.

When Rapport pointed out, that in terms of South African law, it is illegal for a military vehicle to be in private possession, Van der Merwe said he couldn’t comment on that and would first have to discuss it with his clients.

The vehicle is a prototype of the Griffin armoured vehicle, which is built in Boksburg by Scipio Technologies. It is registered with the National Conventional Arms Control Committee as a company which may build armoured vehicles for the military.

That means it may not be sold to civilians.

The DA said it would write to the National Conventional Arms Control Committee’s chair, Jeff Radebe, to find out if the Guptas had permission to own the vehicle. 

"Should Minister Radebe confirm that the Guptas do not have permission to own this vehicle, he must make public the actions that will be taken to ensure that the Guptas are held to account," the DA said in a statement. 

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