Hawks want Pravin Gordhan to be prosecuted for 'espionage'

The Hawks want Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan to be prosecuted for “espionage” in a case related to the activities of the South African Revenue Service “rogue unit” established while he was the tax agency’s commissioner‚ the Sunday Times newspaper reported.

The move is likely to plunge the markets back into the turmoil seen in December last year when President Jacob Zuma fired Nhlanhla Nene as finance minister.

According to senior Hawks sources‚ the unit has handed over a case docket to the National Prosecuting Authority for a decision to prosecute Gordhan and eight other former SARS officials said to have been involved in or have had knowledge of the unit’s activities.

The unit has been accused of illegally gathering intelligence and spying on taxpayers.

The Sunday Times understands that some of Gordhan’s cabinet colleagues were informed of his imminent arrest this week.

Insiders at the Hawks and the NPA told the Sunday Times that they were waiting for the “political go-ahead” before acting.