A father and his two sons received hefty fines and suspended sentences in the Western Cape High Court on Thursday for abalone poaching, money laundering and racketeering.
André Johannes Minnaar, 61, Rudolf Albertus Minnaar, 41 and Marthinus Gys Minnaar, 37, were linked to a syndicate that operated illegal abalone facilities.
They entered into a plea and sentencing agreement with the State.
Police spokesperson, Captain Philani Nkwalase, said the men admitted that they were part of a syndicate that operated in various premises in the Western Cape and Gauteng, where wet abalone was delivered, stored, dried and packaged.
He said the syndicate transported poached abalone for processing at properties in the Western Cape, before delivering the end products to Gauteng.
The court sentenced each of them to five years’ imprisonment, wholly suspended for five years on stringent conditions.
“André and Rudolph were additionally sentenced to a fine of R100 000 with an alternative eight years’ imprisonment for money laundering and abalone poaching, of which half of the sentence was suspended for five years with stringent conditions as well.
“Effectively, the pair will pay R50 000 while Marthinus was additionally sentenced to another eight years’ imprisonment for abalone poaching, which was wholly suspended for five years with stringent conditions,” said Nkwalase.
Seven others earlier pleaded guilty to all charges for which they were sentenced in December 2018. Another two were cleared of all charges.
Nkwalase said proceedings against the remaining accused, attorney Anthony Iver Broadway, would continue in the High Court on March 1. Broadway allegedly aided the syndicate to commit money laundering.