DA lays criminal charges against the Guptas for that wedding

The Democratic Alliance’s shadow minister for finance David Maynier has laid criminal charges with the South African Police Service against members of the Gupta family after it emerged that public funds were allegedly syphoned to pay for a family wedding in Sun City in 2013.

Maynier lodged the complaint at SAPS on Monday morning after the Daily Maverick reported that money from the Free State government, reserved for a dairy farm project in Vrede, was used to pay for the infamous wedding where guests were flown in via Waterkloof military base in Pretoria.

The people whom the charges were made against include:

  • Mosebenzi Zwane (the then MEC for agriculture in the Free State)
  • Atul Gupta
  • Ajay Gupta
  • Rajesh Gupta
  • Ronica Ragavan (acting Oakbay chief executive)
  • Kamal Vasram (a Gupta associate who was involved in a company linked to the dairy project)

Maynier has accused the six of violating the Prevention of Organised Crime Act through money laundering, helping others to benefit from money obtained through unlawful activities, and owning or using such money. They are also accused of trespassing the Tax Administration Act by submitting false or dishonest tax returns.

“The fact that public funds, meant to assist the poor, were allegedly used to pay for President Jacob Zuma’s number one clients’, the Guptas’, family wedding is grotesque and must be investigated without fear or favour by the South African Police Service,” Maynier said in a press statement.

The DA shadow minister has also written to Sars to request that an investigation be conducted into allegations of tax evasion where Linkway Trading is accused of deducting the wedding expenses as business expenses. Maynier says the company is controlled by the Guptas.

Reports that public money was used for the wedding has also cast doubt on auditing firm KPMG for its role in turning an alleged blind eye or being complicit in the affair. Email correspondence,  reported on by the Daily Maverick, has shown that KPMG were the auditors for Linkway.

Sars commissioner Tom Moyane meanwhile told eNCA on Monday morning that the revenue service has not investigated the #GuptaLeaks allegations because the effort would distract from Sars’ core focus to collect revenue. 

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