State to oppose bail for R50m drug-bust accused

14 March 2019 - 11:58 By Orrin Singh
The seven accused in a R50m Durban drug bust consult with their attorneys, Ridwan Sayed and Kiran Subajan, at the Durban Magistrate's Court on March 14 2019.
The seven accused in a R50m Durban drug bust consult with their attorneys, Ridwan Sayed and Kiran Subajan, at the Durban Magistrate's Court on March 14 2019.
Image: JACKIE CLAUSEN

The state says it will oppose bail in the case against seven people accused of manufacturing and dealing in heroin and Mandrax following a R50m drug bust in Durban earlier this month.

Zainudeen Abrahams, 52, Millicent Skippers, 33, Natasha September, 32, Joseph Groenewald, 39, Jamie May, 33, Stephanie Hamke, 25, and Randall Jacobs, 36, shielded their faces from media during their appearance at the Durban Magistrate's Court on Thursday.

Senior state advocate Mahen Naidu informed magistrate Vanitha Armu that the accuseds' addresses had been verified in Cape Town, from where they all hail.

He said the state would oppose bail on the basis that the accused would be a flight risk.

“This is a schedule 5 offence, with the understanding that all the accused form part of a syndicate that worked towards a common purpose,” he said.

Defence attorneys Ridwan Sayed and Kiran Subajan had no objection to this and agreed that a date for a formal bail application should be set.

Magistrate Armu postponed the matter to April 9 for a formal bail application and noted that the accused would be remanded in custody at Westville Prison until their next appearance.

On March 1, a tip-off led police to a massive drug laboratory in Springfield Industrial Park, just outside the Durban Central Business District.

Members of the Provincial Organised Crime Unit (POCU) and the eThekwini Inner South Cluster’s Provincial Drug and Firearm Unit swooped and made four arrests, which led to the arrests of three more people at Shepstone Place in Westville.


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