Two Chinese nationals will face deportation from South Africa after serving their prison terms for dealing in abalone, a court has ruled.
According to the report, the duo were sentenced by the Khayelitsha Priority Crimes Court after being declared as undesirable persons effectively barring them from ever entering the country once they leave jail.
IOL reported that Lin Liuyi (28), and Yang GuiKang (45), were arrested on 27 August 2019, when a Hawks’ Organised Crime Investigation led a multidisciplinary team that included Crime Intelligence, Special Task Force and Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF).
The team conducted a search and seizure operation at two dwellings along Sering Avenue and Kasselsvlei Road Bellville in Cape Town.
Freshly harvested, dried and cooked abalone valued at approximately R2 million was seized as well processing equipment. The pair subsequently made several court appearances where investigators successfully opposed their bail attempt.
According to SAPS, the pair eventually opted to enter into a plea agreement.
The Chinese nations will serve an effective prison term of six (6) months. The charges included:
Count (1), unlawfully operating a fish processing establishment, of which each was sentenced to eighteen (18) months direct imprisonment, twelve (12) months suspended for a period of five (5) years.
Count (2), Landing, Selling, receiving or possession of fish taken in contravention of the Marine Living Resources Act, each sentenced to 12 months direct imprisonment half of which is suspended.
Count (3), Transportation or possession of abalone, each of the accused is sentenced to a term of 12 months direct imprisonment of which half is suspended, and Count (4), they were each sentenced to three months direct imprisonment for contravening the Immigration Act in that they entered or remained in the Republic of South Africa unlawfully.
In addition to the sentence, the court also ruled that the accused are to forfeit all benefited proceeds of their unlawful activities, the confiscated amount is to be paid into the Criminal Assets Recovery Account (CARA) and the State’s Attorney account, and a Mercedes Benz ML 350 valued at R150 000 has also been forfeited to the State.
Photo Credit: iol.co.za