The trial of the seven Chinese nationals arrested for alleged human trafficking and child labour was once again on Monday (September 27) postponed in the Johannesburg High Court due to ill health of the Mandarin interpreter.
In their last appearance on 16 August 2021 the trial was also postponed in the Johannesburg High Court after the presiding Judge, Mhango could not attend due to other commitments.
The Chinese nationals are facing schedule six offences and are facing 160 counts of contravening of SA’s labour laws, trafficking in persons, contravention of Immigration Act, knowingly employing illegal foreigners, kidnapping, pointing a firearm, debt bondage, benefitting from the services of a victim of trafficking, conduct that facilitates trafficking, illegally assisting person(s) to remain in South Africa, and failure to comply with duties of an employer.
They were arrested for allegedly running an illegal enterprise called Beautiful City Pty Ltd located at Village Deep in Johannesburg in a joint operation 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.
The accused have pleaded not guilty to all the charges.
To date, three Malawian witnesses have taken the stand. These are Maxwell Kamanga, Fraser Aufi and Ndika Matola. The three were former employees of Beautiful City.
The matter has been remanded 30 September 2021 for further State evidence.
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