Nafiz Modack to appear in court with 15 other suspects on gun fraud rap

Nafiz Modack with his bodyguards outside court during his extortion trial.
Nafiz Modack with his bodyguards outside court during his extortion trial.
Image: Esa Alexander

Sixteen people, including alleged underworld figure Nafiz Modack and eight ranking police officers, have been arrested for fraud and corruption.

This follows a three-year investigation into alleged wheeling and dealing at divisions of the Central Firearm Registry (CFR), national police spokesperson Brig Vishnu Naidoo said on Tuesday night.

The National Anti-Gang Unit in the Western Cape under the leadership of Maj-Gen Andre Lincoln has been investigating, among others, charges relating to fraud, defeating the administration of justice and contravention of the Firearms Control Act on multiple case dockets in Edenvale, Kempton Park and Norwood in Gauteng.

Naidoo said the probe dated back to November 2017, when police received information on alleged fraud and corruption relating to firearm licence applications taking place between Cape Town and Gauteng.

“In January 2018, it was found that several people, including Cape Town underworld figures and their family and friends, allegedly obtained their competency certificate/s and firearm licence/s to possess a firearm as well as temporary authorisation to possess a firearm/s in an allegedly wrongful manner.

“Investigations revealed that applicants made these applications in the Gauteng province, more so in the SAPS Edenvale, Norwood and Kempton Park area.

“These investigations initially began when a few persons of interest appeared to possess firearms 'legally'.

“The investigations started to reveal, among others, that residential addresses were falsified and/or misrepresented on the applications, information regarding the status of applicants were not revealed and mandatory checks by police designated firearm officers were not conducted.”

The application forms were also found not to be signed by the applicants. The motivations supplied by the applicants as well as the testimonials given by character witnesses were also not signed.

The same applications were then recommended by the firearms officers and were forwarded to members of the provincial office and eventually Central Firearm Registry where they would be approved.

Arrests began earlier this month, including that of a brigadier in Pretoria and three lieutenant-colonels, two in Pretoria and one in Kempton Park. Two former police officers and two people linked to gun shops were also nabbed.

The suspects arrested on Tuesday will be appearing in the Kempton Park magistrate's court on Wednesday, then again with the others on July 10.

“At least five other suspects, including a senior officer of the SA Police Service, are yet to be arrested,” said Naidoo.

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