Illegal poachers nabbed on their tracks and major breakthrough on the mushrooming of illegal firearm

The South African Police Service in this Province continues to achieve massive results in the fight against illegal poaching and the mushrooming of illegal firearms in a number of Clusters especially at the areas where the illegal poaching and violent crimes where firearms are used, are prevalent.

This follows the arrest of twelve (12) suspects for illegal poaching and possession of unlicensed firearms and ammunition during three separate Intelligent led joint operations conducted in the Hoedspruit, Zebediela and Mokopane Policing areas yesterday on 2018-07-10.

Four (04) suspects aged between 23 and 44 were arrested for illegal poaching at a farm in the Hoedspruit Policing area outside Phalaborwa in the Giyani Cluster yesterday on Tuesday 2018-07-10, at about 16:00. The Police received a tip-off about the existence of a group of illegal poachers in one of the local farms, they reacted swiftly, spotted these criminals and apprehended two (02) of them immediately and they were found in possession of unlicensed firearm and ammunition.

The Preliminary Police investigations led to the arrest of another suspect driving a get-away car after he was spotted in the same farm, stopped but he did not cooperate and during that process, he was shot and injured and subsequently taken to hospital for medical attention.

The other driver of the second get-away car managed to evade arrest by abandoning the vehicle and fled on foot and he is still being sought. Meanwhile in the Zebediela Policing area outside Lebowakgomo, Police arrested six (06) suspects aged between 23 and 35 for possession of unlicensed firearm during a special intelligent led joint operation.

It is alleged that on 2018-07-10 at around 10:00 in the morning, the Police stopped a suspicious car and searched it near Mathibela Phase 1 village next to Groothoek Garage, and recovered unlicensed firearms. In the Mokopane Policing area, a sting intelligent led joint operation "Ceasefire" was conducted in the CBD and the surrounding areas targeting the mushrooming of drugs and firearms.

During this operation, two (02) suspects aged 25 and 36 were arrested and recovered firearms and ammunition. The following items were recovered during the three (03) separate operations conducted in the Hoedspruit, Zebediela and Mokopane Policing areas:

* Three (03) motor vehicles, Ford, Golf 7 and Toyota Avanza

* Six (06) firearms including a rifle and ammunition

* Food, clothes, axe, knife and four (04) pallets rounds.

The arrested suspects during these operations will appear before the Mokopane, Lebowakgomo and Hoedspruit Magistrate Courts respectively soon.

The Saps Provincial Commissioner of Limpopo Lt-Gen Nneke Ledwaba applauded these Team of members from Hoedspruit, Zebediela and Mokopane who acted swiftly to stop and arrested these criminals.

He further appreciated members of the Community who continue supporting the Police in fighting crime through the supply of quality and reliable information at all times. The Police investigations in all this cases are still continuing. Anyone with information that can assist the Police to arrest the remaining suspect in the Hoedspruit incident, may contact Captain Cobra Moriri at 083 381 4313 or the crime stop number 0860010111 or the crime line sms 32211 or nearest Police Station.

Source: South African Police Service