Incoming Cape Town mayor Dan Plato raises questions about police's probe into Liyaqat Parker kidnapping

2018-09-19 11:00
Liyaqat Parker. (Supplied)

Liyaqat Parker. (Supplied)

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A multimillion-rand ransom payment for the release of Cape Town businessman Liyaqat Parker has led incoming Cape Town mayor Dan Plato to raise several questions about the police's investigation of the kidnapping.

"Had the police been instrumental in the return of Mr Parker, the Western Cape government would be the first to congratulate them on a sterling job done. However, the opposite currently seems to be true," Plato said on Tuesday.

Parker was returned to his family on Monday evening after he was held captive for more than two months, his family said on Tuesday.

READ: Kidnapped Cape Town businessman released

While Plato - currently Western Cape MEC for Community Safety - was relieved that Parker was returned, he said the release was facilitated through extortion.

"I believe that a ransom worth millions has been paid for the safe return of Mr Parker. Police has thus far remained tight lipped about the investigation, leaving speculation to continue as to their involvement to return Mr Parker or [their] capabilities to arrest those responsible."

Under investigation

Plato urged the police to unmask those responsible and ensure they received their day in court.

"This will unnerve those contemplating similar crimes because they will be caught and will go to jail."

Police spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Andrè Traut told News24 on Tuesday that the case was under investigation and the "finer aspects" could not be discussed.

He said the police's statement did not change in light of Plato's remarks.

Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) spokesperson Moses Dlamini said that no complaints have been logged against any Western Cape SA Police Service (SAPS) officials about Parker's kidnapping.

Plato said he would ask provincial police management for an update on the investigation at a provincial cabinet meeting on Wednesday.

"We remain concerned by the kidnapping incidents involving prominent business people for the apparent extortion of money," he said.

"We are further concerned by recent reports of kidnapping of children. These matters require priority attention from SAPS."

Parker, 65, was allegedly kidnapped by five unknown males around 09:10 at his business in Fairway Close, N1 City on June 9.

Ransom demand

News24 previously reported that a senior source who had direct knowledge of the case said the ransom demand was 50 Bitcoin, which amounted to about R4.3m.

News24 reported on Tuesday that suspected underworld kingpin Nafiz Modack was understood to have played a hand in Parker's release and that someone was arrested in Johannesburg on Sunday.

A recovery team involving Modack, according to a source, was contracted to retrieve Parker. However, this has not been officially confirmed.

On Tuesday, Modack confirmed Parker was indeed back with his family and wished him well.

He declined to comment further.

Meanwhile, the Democratic Alliance named Plato as the successor to current mayor Patricia De Lille in the City of Cape Town. De Lille vacates office at the end of October.

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Read more on:    police  |  dan plato  |  liyaqat parker  |  nafiz modack  |  cape town  |  abductions  |  crime

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