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Hawks raid FS Premier's office over Gupta-linked Vrede dairy farm

The Hawks have confirmed they are at this hour executing search and seizure warrants at the Free State office of the Premier as well as the Agriculture Department.

FILE: ANC secretary general Ace Magashule. Picture: Christa van der Walt/EWN.

PRETORIA - The Hawks have confirmed their investigators are executing search and seizure warrants at the offices of the Free State Premier as well as the Agriculture Department.

It’s understood the investigation relates to the Estina dairy farm project near Vrede in which the Guptas pocketed millions.

The Asset Forfeiture Unit obtained a preservation order with regards to the more than 4,000 hectares of farm land and the more than R220 million in several bank accounts linked to the Guptas.

The Hawks’ Hangwani Mulaudzi was only able to confirm that their investigators are in the process of raiding the offices of the Free State Premier and the Agriculture Department.

It's understood they are looking for documents and related evidence linked to the Estina dairy farm project.

The Hawks Hangwani Mulaudzi says that their investigators are hard at work in Bloemfontein this morning.

"We have members from our serious corruption and cyber crime team that are that are executing those search and seizure operations at the Office of the Premier and the Department of Agriculture. It's in relation to the Estina farm."

Free State Premier Ace Magashule - who is now the ANC’s secretary general - has been implicated in the scheme which was allegedly setup to defraud the Agriculture Department - to benefit of the Gupta family.

As revealed in the Gupta leaks, large sums of money siphoned from the project were used to pay for the family’s lavish sun city wedding - which saw the arrival of hundreds of guests at the Waterkloof Air Force base.

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