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Police Minister Bheki Cele says the investigation into the home affairs and correctional services officials started in 2016.

Police have arrested nine officials from both the Departments of Home Affairs as well as Correctional Services. They are alleged to have elicited bribes of between R3,000 and R6,000 to illegally release over 36 parolees.

Police Minister, Bheki Cele, told the media that the investigation, headed by crime intelligence, started in 2016. At a briefing in Pretoria, both departments confirmed specialised detectives worked around the clock to expose the corrupt activities of the officials involved.

They will now face charges of contravention of the combating and prevention of corrupt activities act.

Cele says most of the 36 parolees illegally released were female drug smugglers.

"These illegal releases enabled foreign parolees and ex-convicts to leave the country freely so they could continue with their criminal activities," he said.

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