Although South Africa's emerging non-racial democracy has been internationally acclaimed, global integration has also brought its problems. One of these is the greater number of illegal immigrants entering the country. This article examines the problem of illegal immigration by focusing on an intensive case study in the locality of Durban. It attempts to identify reasons for illegal immigrants coming to South Africa, ascertain their country of origin, investigate the consequences of their stay in the Republic, identify problems associated with immigrants, and assess policy options to reduce the influx of aliens. The study reveals that the majority of illegal immigrants come to South Africa in search of better economic opportunities. However, they are accused of taking away the jobs of locals, lowering wages and spreading diseases. Although official government policy towards illegals is embodied in the Aliens Control Act (1991), there is a need to understand the problem within its regional and historical context.