Cashed out: Man jailed after cops catch him with R9m and almost $1m at Bloemfontein airport

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A sheet of rare star notes at the US Bureau of Engraving and Printing's Western Currency Facility on October 11, 2013 in Fort Worth, Texas.
A sheet of rare star notes at the US Bureau of Engraving and Printing's Western Currency Facility on October 11, 2013 in Fort Worth, Texas.
PHOTO: Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

A man has been sentenced to three years behind bars after he failed to provide police with an explanation for the R9 million and $900 000 found in his possession.

The Bloemfontein Regional Court convicted and sentenced Raise Baig, 29, on Wednesday after he pleaded guilty to money laundering.

Baig and another man were arrested on 14 February 2017 at the Bram Fischer International Airport in Bloemfontein.

Police spokesperson Captain Christopher Singo said the men could not provide an explanation for their possession of the cash when authorities asked them about it.

He said: 

Baig was found guilty and sentenced to eight years' imprisonment, of which five years was suspended on condition that he is not found guilty of the same offence during the period of his suspension. He will serve three years of direct imprisonment.

He was also fined R200 000, of which R100 000 was suspended.

About R25 million, which the Hawks recovered, was declared forfeited to the State.

The other man was acquitted.

National Hawks head, Lieutenant General Godfrey Lebeya, said the forfeiture order would send a clear message to those who were working with the man.


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