The Chinese nationals who shocked the nation with their cruelty under South African soils
View pictures in App save up to 80% data. The Johannesburg Court today ( 24 June ) granted seven Chinese nationals bail after they were arrested last year for alleged human trafficking and violation of labour laws .This was confirmed by the Department of Employment and labour in a media statement that the labour body released.
The statement released by the labour department confirmed that the seven were granted bail with certain conditions. The seven Chinese nationals had been allegedly arrested last November for alleged human trafficking and violation of South Africa’s labour laws .
Delivering the ruling , Magistrate Basimane Molwana said that all accused whether it could be locals or foreigners , they were all equal before the law.Judge Molwana added that therefore the accused had a right to be heard in the long-drawn bail hearing.
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Magistrate Molwana added that he was not impressed that the accused had to this day not been served with an indictment,as the seven accused in the matter who are Kevin Tsao, Chen Hui, Qin Li, Jiaqing Zhou, Ma Biao, Dai Junying, and Zhang Zhilian had first filed for bail in November.
According to the media statement, on the 20th of March 2020, the Chinese nationals were denied the initial bail.It was because of this that the defence decided to lodge a second bail attempt on new facts.
One of the accused , Tsao was granted a bail of R70 000 with condition that he could leave his place of resident only on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
The second accused , Hui , was granted bail of R55 000 and he also has a previous conviction.
The rest of the accused were granted bail of R30 000 each but with strict conditions.
The second accused and the rest are expected to be granted a to stay by accused number one who was granted the R70 000 bail.
However , according to the Department of labour media statement, they will not be allowed any movement beyond their complex. The will only be allowed movement out of their premises only to sign at the Cleveland Police Station between 06:00am and 18:00pm.
WHAT LED TO THE ARREST?
The Chinese nationals really shocked the nation with the cruelty that they did under South African soils.They got arrested for allegedly running an illegal enterprise called Beautiful City Pty Ltd located at Village Deep in Johannesburg.
The statement revealed that the seven Chinese who consist of four males and three females were arrested on 12 November 2019 in a joint operation that was conducted by the Department of Employment and Labour’s Inspection and Enforcement Services (IES) branch in Gauteng together with the South African Police Services (SAPS), Department of Home Affairs and the Hawks Unit.
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Their arrests took place following a tip-off that the Chinese nationals were allegedly involved in the trafficking of illegal immigrants into South Africa and forcing them into forced labour.
It was during the joint operation that 91 Malawian nationals were found in the factory, in which 37 were children.
A shocker that was delivered during the bail hearing in Court was that the Malawians working in the Chinese factory were transported to South Africa using containers. The Malawians are alleged to have been brought to South Africa by a middleman known as " The Transporter" who is yet to be arrested.
Its alleged that factory was processing the inner cotton of blankets using recycled clothing. It is also alleged that the company’s operations were carried out behind closed high steel gates with access strictly controlled by employers.
The workers were also alleged to be exposed to harsh working conditions without adhering to occupational health and safety.
The media statement revealed that the accused would face charges ranging from human trafficking, violation of Immigration Act, debt bondage, kidnapping and pointing of a firearm.
The Department of Employment and Labour also joined in the matter to press for the prosecution of the accused for violating South Africa’s labour laws.
The media statement confirmed that the accused have been remanded in custody and are expected back in court on the 7th of August 2020.
Source- The South African Department of Employment & Labourback