File picture: Mujahid Safodien/AP
Parliament – Three suspected drug mules and three people suspected of smuggling counterfeit goods into South Africa were nabbed at the OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg over the long weekend, the South African Revenue Service (Sars) said on Tuesday.

The first arrests were made on Thursday when customs officials "intercepted 10 bags and three boxes with counterfeit goods estimated at R4.2 million".

"Three passengers from Hong Kong via Nairobi were linked to the 10 bags and 3 boxes filled with designer wrist watches, footwear and tracksuits. They have since been handed over to the counterfeit team and brand holder attorneys," Sars said in a statement.

On Sunday, two passengers who had landed at the Johannesburg airport from Sao Paolo, were found to have swallowed 49 cocaine bullets each with a combined weight of 0.820 kilograms estimated at R235 914.00, and were arrested.

A third passenger was linked to three abandoned parcels containing 3kg of cocaine worth over R800 000.

"The two passengers were identified as drug mules and taken for X-rays that revealed foreign objects in their abdomen while the third was found with marks of a body wrap," Sars said.

"All three passengers and goods were handed over to the South African Police for further investigation."