The High Court in Bloemfontein has granted the National Prosecuting Authority’s (NPA) Investigating Directorate a restraint order to freeze assets of Iqbal Sharma, his company Nulane Investments and Islandsite Investments, which belongs to Atul and Rajesh Gupta and their wives.
Sharma appeared in the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court for alleged fraud, corruption and money laundering relating to the R24.9 million which was paid by the Agriculture Department to conduct a feasibility study into farming projects in the Free State.
Sharma and former Free State Agriculture Department head Peter Thabethe will spend the weekend in custody, following their first appearance in the court. The other accused, Limakatso Moorosi and Seipati Dlamini, were released on bail of R10 000.
The freeze order will be served on Sharma at the Bloemfontein Bainslvlei Police holding cells, while Islandsite will be served at its local business address.
NPA Investigating Directorate spokesperson, Sindisiwe Seboka, says the company is one of the few owned by the Guptas that still has assets in South Africa.
“The NPA investigating directorate has received an unlimited restraint order against the property of a Gupta-owned company that was opened in South Africa. It’s one of the few companies that has still has assets within the country. The order also has cited the business rescue practitioner because we know that that process is currently taking place. We must also add that the order further extends to Iqbal Sharma and property that he owns, more particularly in his two companies Nolane Investments and as well as Isab Global.”
NPA applies for extradition order from Interpol
On Thursday, the NPA said it has applied for an extradition order from Interpol for the arrest of the Gupta brothers, Atul and Rajesh, who are based in Dubai.
Interpol arrest warrant for Guptas: