A manhunt have been lunched by the Hawks in Bloemfontein for three suspects who are part of an illegal vehicle registration syndicate.

According to Free State Hawks spokesperson Captain Linda Steyn, the suspects are known and could be arrested soon.

On Wednesday, 15 members of the alleged syndicate were arrested across four provinces.

Steyn said six suspects were arrested on Wednesday at the Lengau Traffic Department. Five of them were administrative clerks and one was a police officer responsible for vehicle identification.

The other nine suspects were arrested in Limpopo, Eastern Cape and Gauteng.

Steyn appealed to the three remaining suspects to hand themselves over to Hawks officers.

She said “We know who they are and where they are. One of them who is in Bloemfontein, was not around when we arrived. One of the suspects is in Port Elizabeth and the other is between Gauteng and Lephalale.

Steyn warned that “They are aware that they are wanted suspects. We hope that they will hand themselves over to officers. If they don’t hand themselves over, we will arrest them. They can run, but they can’t hide”.

The suspects are allegedly part of a nationwide syndicate which was operating from the Lengau Traffic Department.

Steyn said the 18 suspects allegedly issued roadworthy certificates for vehicles that were never tested.

The syndicate also assisted people in registering vehicles that were deregistered.

The suspects are expected to appear in the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court on Friday, facing charges of fraud, corruption and money laundering.