Rudi Lakay’s company offers round-the-clock transport for staff, wedding and party goers and pupils going to matric balls, but the State believes he and 10 others may have been operating a criminal enterprise involving drug dealing.
Police announced at the weekend that they arrested “a notorious gang leader” and six others during raids on six suspected drug dens in Kuils River on Friday.
Officers seized a substantial amount of cash, two hard drives and six cellphones.
Captain FC van Wyk said at the time that the group faced over 100 charges in terms of the Prevention of Organised Crime Act.
He said the Transportation Board, South African Revenue Service and the Asset Forfeiture Unit form part of the investigation, which is being led by a dedicated prosecutor from the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA).
“The arrests of these suspects are in line with the strategy of the provincial commissioner to target kingpins of organised criminal groupings and to seize their assets with the assistance of the Asset Forfeiture Unit.”
By the time Lakay, 32, appeared in the Blue Downs Magistrate’s Court on Monday, 10 others were charged alongside him.
They are Ike Collins, 29, Jonathan Hermanus, 29, Christiaan Green, 25, Dwaine Rhode, 27, Quinton Booysen, 39, Almeiro Isaks, 26, Mario de Wee, 28, Eben George, 48, Dylon Lakay, 23, and Liaan Erasmus, 28.
Prosecutor Helene Booysen said that Hermanus, Rhode and De Wee had been in custody at Goodwood prison for other cases.
The website for his business, R Lakay Passenger Services, proudly states that it has reliable staff and vehicles, with no trip “too big or small for us” and prices “that fit your pocket”.
The company, started in 2013, began offering long-distance trips in 2016.
On display in the gallery is a fleet of shiny minibus taxis and other vehicles, some with personalised number plates and custom rims.
The company’s Facebook page appeared to have been deleted on Tuesday afternoon.
At this stage, public documents only show that the accused face charges of dealing in drugs and managing and/or participating in the activities of a criminal enterprise through a pattern of racketeering activity.
The defence told News24 that the State had not given them any indication of what the case was against the 11 or how they were linked to the alleged criminal enterprise.
Booysen told the court that two accused were still outstanding and arrest warrants had been issued for them.
The case was postponed until November 26 for bail information.