Alleged baby thief remanded in custody
MBOMBELA – Sheila Seba Graig (44) briefly appeared in the Nelspruit Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday, August 13, on a charge of the kidnapping of a month-old infant.
It is alleged that, on Monday, August 12, the suspect arrived at the Nelspruit SAPS Community Service Centre holding a young infant child. Graig allegedly told the officers that she needed to complete an affidavit to enable her to adopt the child. When asked about the whereabouts of the biological mother, she reportedly presented a signed affidavit purported to be from the mother, who lives in Bellville, Cape Town.
The suspect also provided the officers with a contact number. Upon phoning, an unknown male put the phone down upon hearing that it was the police on the line. The service centre staff immediately became suspicious and summoned the Hawks’ Serious Organised Crime Investigation team. A subsequent investigation revealed that the baby had apparently been kidnapped shortly after birth from the Bellville Hospital by a female who allegedly pretended to be the relative of the 26-year-old mother. The baby’s mother allegedly fell ill shortly after the child’s birth.
The infant has since been taken to a place of safety while the investigation is ongoing. Meanwhile Graig, who faces charges of contravening the Trafficking in Persons Act, remains in custody and is expected to reappear on August 20 for a formal bail application.
Editor: Anchen Coetzee
Subeditor: Lynette Brink
Submitted by: Capt Dineo Sekgotodi