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Bail denied for dad and son arrested for allegedly trafficking Mozambicans for farm labour

Cornelis Johannes Uys, and his son Cornelis Johannes Albertus Uys have been charged for human trafficking alongside co-accused, Mozambican brothers Carlos Bernardo Guambe and Gabriel Bernardo Guambe. Picture: Supplied/ Hawks

Cornelis Johannes Uys, and his son Cornelis Johannes Albertus Uys have been charged for human trafficking alongside co-accused, Mozambican brothers Carlos Bernardo Guambe and Gabriel Bernardo Guambe. Picture: Supplied/ Hawks

Published Aug 4, 2022

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Pretoria - Cornelis Johannes Uys, a 60-year-old father, and his 23-year-old son Cornelis Johannes Albertus Uys have been denied bail by the Belfast Magistrate’s Court after they were arrested on charges of human trafficking involving Mozambican nationals.

Mpumalanga provincial spokesperson for the Hawks, Captain Dineo Lucy Sekgotodi, said the Uys father and son duo will be in custody until 22 August.

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“The bail against the Uys' was denied, and the matter remanded to August 22, 2022 for further investigations,” said Sekgotodi.

Cornelis Johannes Albertus Uys (pictured) and his father Cornelis Johannes Uys have been charged for human trafficking alongside co-accused, Mozambican brothers Carlos Bernardo Guambe and Gabriel Bernardo Guambe. Picture: Supplied/ Hawks

Previously, the father and son duo appeared in court alongside their co-accused Mozambican brothers, Carlos Bernardo Guambe, 34, and Gabriel Bernardo Guambe, 32.

The four have been charged with contravening the Prevention and Combating of Trafficking in Persons Act and participating in or conspiring to traffic in persons.

Last week, the two Guambe brothers were found guilty and sentenced by the Belfast Magistrate’s Court for contravening the Immigration Act.

“They (the Guambe brothers) were sentenced to three months imprisonment or R5 000 fine each,” said Sekgotodi.

On the charge of human trafficking, the Guambe brothers abandoned their bail application, while the Uys father and son continued to push for release on bail.

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The four are scheduled to return to court on 22 August.

It is alleged that 39 victims were recruited from Mozambique and brought into South Africa in a taxi with the promise of better jobs.

They victims comprised seven women, nine children under the age of five, 23 men all over the age of 18, and were rescued from a farm in Belfast. They were taken to a place of safety in Witbank.

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Previously, police spokesperson Colonel Katlego Mogale said: “It is alleged the modus operandi entailed the victims being brought into South Africa from Mozambique in a taxi. In Lydenburg, the farm owner’s son and one trafficker will meet the taxi driver and pay him. The victims will then be brought on the farm for labour.”

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