The South African Police Service (SAPS) have once more intercepted motor vehicles, including a luxury SUV, from being smuggled out of the country at the northern border between South Africa and Zimbabwe and in the process, confiscated packs of illegal cigarettes at different locations.
The Crime Intelligence driven operation comprising members of the Musina SAPS and the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) followed up information that led them to the discovery of a BMW X3 in the middle of the Limpopo River, the SAPS said on 19 April. The suspects abandoned the vehicle and fled to the other side of the river. The vehicle was then retrieved and towed back to South Africa.
The operation was expanded to other areas of Musina after information was related that there were cigarette smugglers using three vehicles. One of the vehicles sped off from the Baobab tollgate and was found abandoned along the Waterpoort road after an intense car chase. The other vehicle was cornered at Sebayeng next to Turfloop in the Mankweng Cluster outside Polokwane. The suspect, aged 38, was subsequently arrested and illegal cigarettes confiscated.
Police are still tracing the other suspects involved in these incidents and investigations into the ownership of the recovered vehicles are still unfolding. The arrested suspect will appear before the Mankweng Magistrate Court soon.