Home affairs officials arrested for allegedly helping foreigners to get SA passports

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The Hawks have arrested four home affairs officials for allegedly assisting foreign nationals obtain fraudulent South African passports.
The Hawks have arrested four home affairs officials for allegedly assisting foreign nationals obtain fraudulent South African passports.
Photo: Felix Dlangamandla, Gallo Images, Netwerk24
  • Four home affairs officials were arrested in Limpopo on charges of fraud and corruption.
  • The officials allegedly assisted foreign nationals to obtain South African passports fraudulently.
  • More suspects are expected to be arrested.

The Hawks have arrested four home affairs officials in Tzaneen, Limpopo, for allegedly selling South African passports to undocumented foreign nationals.

They were arrested on Wednesday following an investigation that started in May.

Hawks spokesperson Captain Matimba Maluleke said the officials, aged 35 to 43, were arrested on fraud and corruption charges.

They allegedly conspired with so-called runners to recruit South African citizens to apply for passports.

READ | 'Syndicate' operating in Home Affairs branch charged with selling SA identities for R40 000

"They followed all the processes of applying for a passport. [Things changed] when it came to the photo shoot. The officials would call foreign nationals to the (photo) booth. The passports would contain the particulars of South African citizens but with photos of illegal foreign nationals," said Maluleke.

Home Affairs official arrested
A Limpopo-based home affairs official has been arrested for allegedly assisting undocumented foreigners to obtain South African passports.

The Home Affairs Counter-corruption and Security unit discovered the illegal activities in May this year.

"The unit referred the matter to the Hawks' Serious Corruption Investigation [team]. Our investigations revealed that citizens whose particulars were used would be paid R1 000.

"The suspects, who were employed as administration clerks, were arrested in the Tzaneen area during a sting operation between the Hawks and Home Affairs Counter-corruption and Security members," Maluleke said.

The suspects are expected to appear in the Tzaneen Magistrate's Court on Friday.

Maluleke said the search for more suspects was continuing.



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