Specialised operational units deployed in the west rand ensure the arrest of 110 suspects and seizure of illegal mining equipment, firearms and gold bearing mineral

PARKTOWN - The Gauteng Provincial Commissioner of Police, Lieutenant General Elias Mawela has commended the multi-disciplinary teams operating in the West Rand as part of the ongoing police efforts to combat illicit mining and associated crimes in the West Rand.

Following the two day Izimbizo held in Krugersdorp and Kagiso in the West Rand last weekend, the ongoing District and Provincial operations have been boosted by additional forces from the National Head Office to combat illicit mining in the area.

The units that have been deployed include Tactical Response Teams (TRT), National Intervention Unit (NIU) and Special Task Force (STF), Public Order Police (POP), Mounted Unit, Visible Policing, K9 Unit, Economic Infrastructure Task Team and Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation specifically to focus on medium to high risk situations in the district while and POP and Crime Prevention units focus is to enhance visibility and prevention of crime in communities. The Department of Home Affairs officials on the other hand are assisting with arrested undocumented persons.

While the SAPS continues to work on an integrated plan with all relevant stakeholders to tackle the levels of the illegal mining value chain, the deployed members have this week, 8 to 12 August 2022, managed to arrest 110 suspects for charges that include contravention of the Precious Metals Act, contravention of the Immigration Act, possession of unlicensed firearms & ammunition and possession of drugs.

During the operations, the teams have recovered a rifle that belongs to the estate of a deceased man from Mpumalanga; Pilgrims Rest, two unlicensed firearms, 24 pendukas, generators, loads of gold bearing material, explosives and drugs among other things.

The communities of West Rand including the community leaders and local counsellors are encouraged to continue working together with the police and sharing information on the whereabouts of illegal miners that are alleged to be committing crime in the area. Members of the public may also call the SAPS Crime Stop number 08600 10111 or send tip-offs via the MySAPS Application which can be downloaded on any smartphone.

Source: South African Police Service

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