A connection between people arrested for planting bombs in Durban, the murder of the UK Saunders couple in KwaZulu-Natal earlier this year and a recent arrest linked to an Isis cell in Rotterdam is being investigated by the Hawks.
A source close to the investigation told City Press’ sister publication Rapport that the cells are allegedly using extortion – and even kidnapping and murder in the case of Rodney (74) and Dr Rachel Saunders (63) – to try to get large sums of money, which is converted into cryptocurrencies to finance Isis activities.
Minister of Police Bheki Cele announced the arrest of three men in Durban on Friday.
Earlier this year one man died and another two were injured when a mosque in Verulam was attacked.
In the case of the Saunders, R700 000 was stolen from their bank accounts before they were murdered.
Fatima Patel (27), Sayefudeen del Vecchio (38) and Ahmad Mussa were arrested for the murder.
Scotland Yard sent a team of specialists to work with the Hawks.
According to Willem Els, an anti-terror expert from the Institute of Security Studies, a Dutch jihadist, known only as “Mohammed G” was arrested in Rotterdam at the end of August. He reportedly tried to buy bitcoins with Rachel Saunders’ credit card.
Dutch reports said Mohammed G has close contact with Isis’ top structures in Africa. He made contact with two suspects in the Saunders murder and a Somalian who may have been involved.