Ronald Lamola Guptas

Minister Ronald Lamola. [Photo: GCIS]

Gupta arrests: No extradition request made by SA yet – Lamola

The Gupta brothers, considered key figures in state capture, were arrested by authorities in the United Arab Emirates (AUE) in June

Ronald Lamola Guptas

Minister Ronald Lamola. [Photo: GCIS]

Justice Minister Ronald Lamola has revealed that South Africa is yet to make an official extradition request for the Gupta brothers Rajesh and Atul. The Guptas were arrested by authorities in the United Arab Emirates (AUE) after receiving a red notice from Interpol.

“The arrest reflects the continuous efforts of the UAE in combating money laundering crimes through local cooperation among competent authorities, including the Ministry of Justice, the Dubai Public Prosecution, the Executive Office to Combat Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing, and the Financial Intelligence Unit, as well as through vital coordination and collaboration with international counterparts,” Dubai Police had said at the time.

Lamola was responding to a question from the Democratic Alliance (DA) in Parliament.

The Guptas are considered central figures in state capture, having allegedly used their proximity to former president Jacob Zuma to unduly profit to the tune of billions from lucrative government contracts. The family fled South Africa in 2018 shortly after Zuma left office.


According to Ronald Lamola, the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) first needs to submit a request to the Justice Department’s Director-General, who handles such matters, before the Gupta brothers can be extradited. But even before then, the exact place they are being held first needs to be established.

Last Month, the NPA said it was engaging with relevant authorities in SA and UAE to secure extradition.

“The NPA has an experienced team of internal and external experts who are working closely with law enforcement and our partners in the criminal justice system on the matter,” said NPA spokesperson Mthunzi Mhaga.

The news of the Gupta brothers’ arrests has been widely welcomed by opposition parties and anti-corruption bodies, including the Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (OUTA) and Corruption Watch.