Limpopo vehicles smuggling update: Hawks arrest last syndicate member. South Africa’s specialised crime-busting police, the Hawks have arrested the last member of a syndicate of soldiers that were involved in facilitating the smuggling of stolen vehicles from that country into Zimbabwe.
Hawks spokesperson for Limpopo, Captain Matimba Maluleke said the 31-year-old soldier from Eastern Cape Province was arrested in Polokwane on Monday. He said the racket was made up of nine soldiers who have been under their radar since 2017.
“The ninth South African National Defence member aged 31 was arrested on Monday, September 21 in relation to cross-border vehicle smuggling,” said Capt Maluleke. “He is the last member of the crew we have put under surveillance since 2017 under an intelligence-driven operation dubbed “Night Vigil.”
His eight accomplices have all appeared at Musina Magistrate Court on corruption charges and were arrested in North West, Free State, and Northern Cape provinces between June and this month. One of the suspects was arrested last week in Northern Cape.”
The official said between 2017 and 2019, the accused were deployed to Beitbridge Border Post on national duty.
He said instead of carrying out their constitutional mandate, the group allegedly connived with vehicle smuggling syndicates to smuggle stolen vehicles through the Limpopo River. Capt Maluleke said the crew would allegedly demand a bribe of R15 000 per vehicle which they would share among themselves.
“The accused were under the radar of the Hawks until they were arrested. The suspect will appear in the Musina Magistrate’s Court soon to face corruption charges. The other eight accused persons are currently out on R3000-00 bail each and they will appear again on October 21,” he said.
Source – The Herald
In other news – President Mnangagwa extends Level 2 Lockdown
President Mnangagwa extends Level 2 Lockdown. President Emmerson Mnangagwa on Tuesday extended the Level 2 Lockdown Measures announced on the 7th of September 2021 by another two weeks, under the same conditions.