State capture inquiry seizes safety deposit boxes belonging to alleged Gupta 'fixer' - report

Ajay and Atul Gupta. (Daily Sun, file)
Ajay and Atul Gupta. (Daily Sun, file)

Three safety deposit boxes containing Kruger rands and different currencies belonging to alleged Gupta "fixer" Kuben Moodley have been seized by the commission of inquiry into state capture after it obtained a search-and-seizure warrant, the Sunday World reported.

The contents of the boxes, according to court papers lodged by Moodley, were allegedly stashed by several politicians and former Transnet executives, such as former chief financial officer Anoj Singh and CEOs Brian Molefe and Siyabonga Gama, the report said.

Gama and Singh told the newspaper they knew nothing about the allegations, while Molefe denied outright ever renting or owning a safety deposit box.

In an application to review and set aside the search-and-seizure warrant, Moodley reportedly said the summons served on Knox Titanium Vault Company and the application for the warrant were unlawfully issued and only law enforcement agencies, not the commission, had powers of confiscation.

According to Fin24, Moodley was a fixer, although he preferred the term "business development partner". For a fee, he made the connections that helped companies land lucrative contracts with state-owned enterprises like Transnet and Eskom.

In the final report adopted by Parliament's portfolio committee on public enterprises into allegations of state capture at Eskom and Transnet, Moodley was listed among several individuals who either failed to make themselves available for questioning during the inquiry, or should, according to the report, be summoned to the commission chaired by Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo.

The Daily Maverick reported last Friday that Moodley had said he was using the boxes for personal items and business documents.

The commission first served summons on Knox in June this year for material relating to the boxes rented by Moodley and others.

It reported that the High Court in Johannesburg had set aside an initial summons and search-and-seizure warrant last month, issuing a cost order against the commission after being critical of "unauthorised conduct". 

Acting commission secretary Peter Pedlar said in an application for a warrant that the investigation had revealed prominent politicians and Transnet executives visited the Gupta compound in Saxonwold, left with bags of money, and the contents of the bags were then deposited at the Knox vault, according to the Sunday World.

- Compiled by Jenna Etheridge 

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