Cape Town police have managed to arrest Craig Smith, a 49-year-old immigration lawyer, who was involved in lots of crimes, including racketeering, incitement, fraud, forgery, uttering and money laundering.
The suspect is now facing 1,100 charges for the crimes he commited in order to cheat the migration system in the country. He is expected to appear in Cape Town Magistrates’ Court on Friday.
According to the reports, Smith created an enterprise together with his wife, Cornelia Alexa Smith, 49, and his employee, Shafieka Salie, 51. Between October 2011 and July 2014, the organization named Craig Smith and Associates (CSA) sold illegal work permits for foreigners and also kept the money bound for the SA Revenue Service and the Department of Labour to itself.
Smith and his accomplices also allegedly paid bribes to certain local Department of Home Affairs officials in exchange for the “legalisation” of clients who had overstayed their permits.
The attorney was arrested in 2015 after the police started investigating into the matter but the court decided to free him as all allegations were declared “unlawful”. Recent probing showed that previous conclusions were erroneous.
“On Tuesday, the three were taken to court and Cornelia Smith was released on bail, of which R100 000 is payable in 72 hours, whilst Salie’s bail was set at R1 000. Craig Smith is still in custody,” Hawks spokesperson Philani Nkwalase said.