Two suspects have been arrested for human trafficking by the Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department (JMPD).
The male and female were handcuffed on Wednesday in the Johannesburg CBD.
JMPD spokesperson Xolani Fihla said officers stopped an overloaded Silver Toyota Quantum mini bus taxi with Mozambican registration plates while conducting Buya Mthetho patrols along Wanderers and Noord Street.
“Officers proceeded to search the vehicle and found that all the passengers were undocumented foreign nationals. A lady in the vehicle attempted to talk on behalf of the passengers for them not to be arrested,” Fihla explained.
“Whilst communicating with the officers, the lady mentioned that each person had paid her R3500 to come to South Africa for a better life and to get a job. The driver of the minibus taxi was paid R1000 per person.”
Fihla added that the lady further alluded that they transport the people from Malawi crossing the Mozambique border into South Africa.
“The driver and lady were arrested and detained at Johannesburg Central Saps. Immigration officials where contacted for the processing of the 20 passengers who came into the borders of South Africa illegally.”
Earlier this month, Provincial Hawks spokesperson Yoliswa Mgolodela came under fire for her comments about foreign nationals living in South Africa who are not vulnerable to kidnappings for ransom.
Her comments were made in a pre-recorded interview which was aired on Carte Blanche surrounding the spate of kidnappings in the country.
During the interview, Mgolodela insisted the Hawks are making inroads in the fight against kidnappings-for-ransom cases in the Eastern Cape.
Meanwhile, the Hawks are searching for an official from the Department of Home Affairs for his involvement in fraud and corruption.
It is understood that 28-year-old Kagiso Ronny Maboa contravened the Immigration Act.
Hawks’ spokesperson Captain Dineo Lucy Sekgotodi said Maboa is sought following an investigation which started in April 2022.
Last month, a senior Home Affairs official was dismissed after it emerged that he recommended the permanent stay of self-proclaimed prophet Shepherd Bushiri and his family in South Africa.