Govt officials implicated in Gupta-linked dairy farm

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The National Prosecuting Authority’s Asset Foreiture Unit investigators are at the controversial Gupta-linked Estina Dairy Farm in Vrede.

The dairy project has been placed under curatorship after the unit was granted a court order to evaluate the assets on the farm.

Court papers show that the Free State’s Department of Agriculture, under Mosebenzi Zwane, paid the Guptas over R200 million for a dairy farm project that was initially meant to benefit members of the local community.

Investigators say operations will continue until the High Court issues a further seizure order. This entails putting monetary value on all the assets on the farm.

The farm was supposed to employ more than 500 workers. But only 45 are currently employed and paid by the Free State Development Corporation.

The farm produces 4500 litres of milk per day, with approximately 200 cows on site.

According to court papers, no feasibility study was conducted prior to the farm being chosen for the project.

Papers before court have revealed that more than R200 million has been channeled to companies linked to the politically-connected Gupta family.

Fifteen bank accounts, of which one belongs to Atul Gupta, have been frozen.

An  official has told the SABC News that the R220 million allegedly used far exceeds what is materially visible.

A 700-page court order details what is supposed to be on the farm.

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