06/12/2017 13:23 GMT | Updated 06/12/2017 13:24 GMT

Joint Hawks/Ipid Raid On Seven Phahlane/Keating Properties

The raid formed part of the investigation into former acting police commissioner Khomotso Phahlane and SAPS contractor Keith Keating. 

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PRETORIA, SOUTH AFRICA; APRIL 04: Acting national police commissioner Khomotso Phahlane during his official welcoming parade on April 04, 2017, in Pretoria, South Africa. (Photo by Gallo Images / Frennie Shivambu)

The net appears to be closing in on former acting police commissioner Khomotso Phahlane and South African Police Service (SAPS) contractor Keith Keating.

News24 reports that it has reliably learnt that a joint operation between the Hawks and the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) saw seven properties connected to the pair raided this week.

It was recently revealed that Keating's company, FDA (Forensic Data Analyst), had allegedly received R5-billion in SAPS contracts since 2010.

In a letter sent to then-acting police commissioner Lieutenant-General Lesetja Mothiba, the Ipid said that Keating had paid for vehicles for Phahlane, his wife and sister.

"The investigation has detected possible crimes of corruption, fraud and money laundering, facilitated by car dealer Durand Snyman," the letter said.

IPID said that Phahlane, his sister, his wife, and a Colonel Potgieter (from the SAPS unit known as TMS) had received vehicles allegedly sponsored by businessman Snyman.

The letter said that the vehicles were purchased under the fake name John Doe, and that Keating paid for them by putting money into Snyman's account.

Keating, the Ipid said, has a contract with the SAPS for the supply and maintenance of Rofin lights, alleged to be worth R1-billion.

He also has contracts with TMS, which is where Phahlane's wife, Brigadier Phahlane, works.

Corruption, money laundering allegations

News24 further reported that this week's raids were conducted under the direction of the Special Commercial Crimes Unit, and were part of the Ipid's investigation into allegations of corruption and money laundering involving Phahlane.

The searches were conducted by the Ipid after they obtained search warrants from various courts.

The properties searched included Phahlane's home in Sable Hills, Keating's FDA offices and home, Snyman's office and home, Potgieter's home, and Phahlane's sister's house.

Sources close to the investigation allege that a vehicle was seized from Phahlane's sister's house; that LCRC (Local Criminal Record Centre) equipment belonging to the SAPS was found at Keating's offices; and that a bakkieload of documents was seized from Keating's house and offices.

"RFID (radio-frequency identification) tags, for which the SAPS paid R374-million, were found hidden at a construction site and never used," a source said.

Documents which allegedly show Phahlane's involvement in the cases against Ipid investigators and Ipid head Robert McBride were found at Phahlane's house.

Keating confirmed to News24 that his house and office had been raided.

"My legal team are busy dealing with the issue," Keating said.

'We deplore and condemn that kind of stuff'

Phahlane said it was police procedure that he could not comment on police investigations that were underway.

Ipid spokesperson Moses Dlamini said they could not comment on an ongoing investigation.

Last week, the police and the State Information Technology Agency (SITA) were asked questions by the Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa), about their contracts with FDA.

Keating sat and watched the meeting throughout.

Scopa chairperson Themba Godi said it was the position of the committee that the contracts with FDA were of a corrupt nature, and that they wanted them cancelled.

"For the first time in this Parliament, the person who is alleged [to be connected to] irregular procurements came and sat throughout the meeting –– Mr Keith Keating –– without any hint of shame or embarrassment. We deplore and condemn that kind of stuff," Godi said.