Suspected ISIS members hide out in Ballito

Image: North Coast Courier.

Image: North Coast Courier.

The couple is believed to be involved in the kidnapping of two South African-Britons earlier this month.

A couple suspected of being connected to the terrorist group ISIS is believed to have been camping out in Ballito, KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) on an on-and-off basis, North Coast Courier reports.

The Hawks Crimes Against the State Unit, Durban Serious Organised Crime Unit and Durban Crime Intelligence KZN are investigating Sayfydeen Aslam Del Vecchio (38) and Fatima Patel (27) for their possible involvement in the kidnapping of two South African-Britons on February 12.

READ MORE: Anti-jihadist coalition looks to future role after IS defeat

The kidnapping is suspected to have been taken place near Bivane dam, Vryheid in KwaZulu-Natal.

Hawks spokesperson for the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation, brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi, said Patel and Vecchio are facing charges of kidnapping, robbery and arson, as they are accused of setting alight several hectares of cane fields in 2017 worth R2 million at Tongaat-Hulett plantations.

“They are also facing possible violation of Protection Constitutional Democracy Against Terrorists and Other Related Activities (POCDATARA). The Priority Crime Litigation Unit (PCLU) from is providing assistance with the prosecution.”

The accused appeared briefly at Vryheid Magistrate Court on Monday. They are expected to appear again on March 1 for a formal application.

“The Hawks are exploring all lines of inquiry and cannot comment further while the investigation is ongoing. More arrests are imminent,” Mulaudzi.

Anti-jihadist coalition looks to future role after IS defeat

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