The MEC for police, roads and transport, Butana Komphela, has congratulated the South African Police Services (SAPS) for its hard work in fighting crime in the Free State.
Recently, the police made an important breakthrough to arrest in Bethlehem a Namibian national who was found in possession of unpolished diamonds worth R3-million.
The suspect was travelling from Ficksburg when the SAPS reacted to a tip-off from an informer to pounce on the man.
Besides the 34 black diamonds and 15 white diamonds with an estimated total value of R3-million recovered from the man, the alleged smuggler was also found in possession of a digital rock scale, a magnifying glass, two diamond defectors selectors and R5 000 in cash.
In another recent incident, the police in Mangaung reacted swiftly to a tip-off to arrest four men suspected of breaking into a house in Batho location and making away with goods worth R300 000.
When they were arrested, the suspects were found in possession of electrical appliances and household goods – most of them brand new and still in their original packaging – believed to have been stolen during the break-in.
Komphela was also pleased after the police arrested two men and confiscated from them copper cables with an estimated value of R2-million in the Mangaung area.
In Ficksburg, 11 suspects who are employees of the Setsoto Local Municipality were arrested after the police were tipped off about stolen copper cables worth R400 000 stored in a house in Meqheleng township.
The MEC was also impressed that more than 600 people were arrested during Operation Penya Tsotsi (corner the criminals) and another 106 were arrested at Macufe, mostly for offences like driving under the influence, drug-related crimes, possession of dangerous weapons, undocumented persons and hijacking.
During the operation, the police also confiscated three illegal firearms, 15 rounds of ammunition, three stolen vehicles, 565 290 litres of illegal liquor, mandrax tablets and dagga.
Komphela has warned criminals that the SAPS will “leave no stone unturned to eliminate crime in the Free State”.