Gupta brothers Ajay and Atul. File photo

CAPE TOWN - The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) is taking the battle against the Guptas to Dubai, where officials have asked the United Arab Emirates government to preserve R169 million the family allegedly stole and transferred out of South Africa, according to media reports on Sunday.

City Press reported that a senior prosecutor working close to the case told the newspaper the NPA was confident that authorities in Dubai would co-operate.

This was the first official step local law enforcement authorities had taken to pursue the Guptas, close friends of former president Jacob Zuma, to Dubai where they own a mansion that allegedly cost them R331 million, City Press reported.

Earlier this year, the Asset Forfeiture Unit (AFU) was granted an order to freeze assets worth R1.6 billion belonging to Gupta-linked companies McKinsey and Trillian.  

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NPA spokesperson Luvuyo Mfaku confirmed that the preservative orders freezing the companies’ assets was obtained by the AFU in December.

It is understood that the preservation order was brought by the unit on the basis that the assets were the proceeds of crime. 

African News Agency/ANA