A joint operational plan to address theft and damage to essential infrastructure in the rail environment has continued to yield positive results.
“In the latest breakthrough to curb such criminal activity, copper cables worth a market value of R900 000 were seized,” the South African Police Service (SAPS) said.
A team comprising members of the SAPS, Transnet and Bidvest Security followed up on crime intelligence-led information about illegal activities taking place at Boschmanspoort Mine in Mpumalanga.
“Upon arrival at the scene of the crime, the team pounced on a group of illegal miners, who began shooting towards the team.
“The team returned fire and upon further investigation, found copper cables weighing 600kg.
“The cables have been seized and the case has been taken over by organised crime, where the hunt for the illegal miners is still underway,” the SAPS said.
In another incident, copper cables with a market value worth R38 000 and a vehicle suspected to be used in the commission of the crime has been seized in the Laanglagte policing precinct.
One suspect has been arrested and will appear in court today.
In Kuilsriver in Cape Town, SAPS managed to recover signal cables with a market value of R20 000. Three men aged 18, 32 and 62 were arrested.
The trio will appear before the Kuilsrivier Magistrates Court today.
“All suspects arrested have been charged with destruction and theft of essential infrastructure, and being in possession of suspected stolen goods,” SAPS said.
Police are appealing to communities to come forward with information that may assist in putting a stop to such criminality.
Members of the public are encouraged to call the Crime Stop hotline number on 086 00 10111 or download the MySAPS App.
“The public is reminded that they may remain anonymous and that all information will be treated with confidentiality,” SAPS said.