South Africa’s ports of entry have been put on high alert after Ajay Gupta failed to appear in court in connection with the Estina Dairy Farm empowerment project fraud case.
Gupta is one of eight accused in the matter and had made an undertaking to appear in the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court on Thursday, however, he failed to show up.
South African police, commonly known as the Hawks, warned the oldest of the Gupta brothers to hand himself over to avoid embarrassment.
The state alleges that millions of rand meant to benefit poor locals in the Free State were siphoned off for the benefit of the Gupta brothers Ajay, Atul and Rajesh.
The Guptas have a close relationship with former president Jacob Zuma and his son Duduzane.
The Hawks said they had a solid case against the accused, seven of whom were granted bail of between R10,000 and R200,000, while one remained in custody.
Three of the accused are government employees while one is a Gupta family member and the others are Gupta associates.
Unconfirmed reports said Atul Gupta’s attempt to flee the country was foiled when a pilot refused to fly his plane
The matter comes up in court on August 17./enca