‘Dangerous speculation’: NPA dismisses reports about ‘poor handling’ of Gupta extradition process

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'Dangerous speculation': NPA dismisses reports about 'poor handling' of Gupta extradition process
'Dangerous speculation': NPA dismisses reports about 'poor handling' of Gupta extradition process

Africa-Press – South-Africa. The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) says reports about its apparent “poor handling” of the extradition of the Gupta brothers from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) should be “dismissed as dangerous speculation”.

In a statement on Wednesday, NPA spokesperson Mthunzi Mhanga said the prosecuting body had “full confidence” in its prosecutors, who were working to finalise the formal extradition of Rajesh and Atul Gupta. The duo faces fraud and money laundering charges in South Africa.

The Gupta brothers, referred to by the Dubai police as being “among South Africa’s most wanted suspects”, were arrested earlier this month.

Mhanga said the NPA had noted “with concern the widespread misinformation and speculation about how the NPA and its leadership are handling this complex legal process”.

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“While we recognise the public interest in this matter, we must focus on delivering on our constitutional mandate and responsibilities without distraction, and without fear or favour.”

He added:

Mhanga said the extradition processes were complex, and each had peculiar dynamics, depending on the country involved.

He said expert prosecutors in the NPA have been dealing with extradition cases for many years.

He said the NPA’s team was leading the process, with the support of several private counsels, as necessary, to assist with the finalisation of the formal extradition request.

He said the NPA had already submitted the requests for provisional arrest warrants through the appropriate channels.

South Africa had 60 days from the date of arrest to submit the formal extradition application in terms of the extradition treaty between South Africa and the UAE.

He said:

“We have previously explained why we will not be commenting on the legal dimensions of the case at this early stage and this remains our position for important legal and case-specific reasons.

“The NPA appeals to all South Africans to allow it, and all other stakeholders officially mandated to manage this process, to do so in a manner that will let justice prevail.”

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