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Nine suspects appeared in court for money laundering


Media Statement
Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (HAWKS)

MPUMALANGA - The family of the former field ranger, Chikwa David Maluleke; Joyce Maluleke (51), Stephinah Mbhombi (52), Oters Maluleke (27), Miyelani Maluleke (29) and Nkhesane Maluleke (22) were released on R5000-00 bail each.

Another family of a former field ranger, Solly Ubisi; Thandi Makhuvele (37), Alsina Mkhonto (61), Ignatia Mnisi (36), Given Mzimba (28) were remanded in custody and their case was postponed to 8 December 2022 for further bail hearing.

The nine were arrested during a multidisciplinary integrated take down operation "Blood Orange" conducted in Mpumalanga, Gauteng and Limpopo provinces respectively by the Mpumalanga based Hawks’ Serious Corruption Investigation, Mpumalanga and Limpopo Serious Organised Crime Investigation and Serious Commercial Crime Investigation, Crime Intelligence, Tactical Response Team and Local Criminal Record Centre during the early hours of Friday, 2 December 2022.

The arrest followed a comprehensive investigation which included their financial affairs. KPMG was co-opted to do the financial investigation of the money flow into accounts of the suspects. It is alleged that the two main accused who were previously arrested on 24 April 2022 and charged with corruption, money laundering and fraud linked to wildlife trafficking provided tactical information to rhino poaching syndicates in exchange for substantial sums of money which were transferred into the bank accounts of the family members who received gratification and benefited out of that money.

Maluleke and Ubisi were released on bail by the Bushbuckridge Magistrates Court. Their case was postponed to 27 January 2023 for further investigation and to be joined with their family members.

The other two suspects are still at large. They will be traced and brought to book as the investigation continues. Anyone with further information on the investigation is urged to contact the Hawks’ investigating officer, Colonel Danie Hall on 071 481 3281.


Captain Dineo Lucy Sekgotodi
071 481 3493