- An immigration officer working at OR Tambo International Airport has been arrested for being part of a syndicate that smuggled people into South Africa
- The arrest of the officer comes after the Department of Homes alongside SARS conducted a sting operation
- South Africans are questioning why some many foreign nationals are willing to risk getting arrested by entering the country illegally
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JOHANNESBURG - The Department of Home Affairs and SARS conducted a sting operation that resulted in the arrest of an immigration officer who was running a syndicate that allowed foreign nationals into South Africa without the proper legal documentation.
The immigration officer would make Bangladesh nationals who did not qualify to be in South Africa pay a fee to be smuggled into the country.
In a television interview, Minister of Home Affairs Dr Aaorn Motsoaledi revealed that the immigration officer worked for a kingpin who is stationed in Bangladesh, according to TimesLIVE.
Bangladesh nationals enter South Africa with their country passport but do not have visas. They pay the kingpin approximately R110 000 to gain entry, says Motsoaledi. After paying the fee, they are given a map of OR Tambo International airport so they can navigate and avoid being caught.
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If they are caught, they tell officials that they are not coming to South Africa and are in transit to Eswatini. They then sit in the transit lounge and then wait to be signalled to a counter where the immigration officers are waiting to help them enter Mzansi.
Motsoaledi also added that some of the cleaners at the airport were also in on the scheme and would sometimes wheel people out in dustbins. The immigration officer gets paid R60 000 and the money then gets distributed to other people working in the syndicate.
Motsoaledi is determined to shut down the entire syndicate soon and says more arrests will be made, reports The South African.
South Africans weigh in on the OR Tambo syndicate
"Are we saying @sarstax is unable to pick up discrepancies in these ppl's incomes? They only squeeze us general workers with one income."
"The minister is working hard well done."
"So this kills flat “the claims of the Minister is targeting Africans”, his stings have touched Pakistani and Bangladeshi syndicates, why is he not attacked with xenophobia in these instances or is a label only reserved against sans when he applies the same laws on Africans?"
"Nah, don't believe these people have so much money! Why on earth then do they want to get smuggled into our country?"
"What exactly do they do in SA that makes them pay this much and risk being arrested?"
Hawks arrest Pakistani man and 2 Home Affairs officials behind a fake passport syndicate in Krugersdorp
Briefly News previously reported that the masterminds behind a fake passport syndicate have finally been arrested red-handed thanks to a sting operation led by the Department of Home Affairs and the Hawks.
The police operation took place shortly after midnight in Krugersdorp and two Home Affairs officials were arrested alongside the Pakistani man. The Hawks arrested a total of 28 people who are believed to be involved in the elaborate scheme.
According to TimesLIVE, the arrested mastermind worked alongside other corrupt Home Affairs officials in provinces such as Limpopo, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Eastern Cape and the Western Cape. The two Home Affairs officials who were arrested alongside the kingpin are reportedly his trusted lieutenants.
Source: Briefly News