The South African Police Services (SAPS) in the Free State has this week clamped a total of 278 suspects for various crimes. This after a weekly operation was held between 2 and 8 June together with SADF, National and Provincial Traffic, Road Traffic Cooperation, Private Security, DOH, DHA, DOJ, and SARS.
During the operation several roadblocks were conducted as well as monitoring and stop-and-search operations. The operation also included the tracing of wanted suspects in a quest to bring down the volumes of serious and violent crimes in the province.
According to police spokesperson Brigadier Motantsi Makhele, among the nabbed suspects, 139 were arrested for murder, attempted murder, rape, assault GBH, assault common and sexual offences. “Two were arrested for robbery while a combined number of 55 property-related suspects were also detained including 33 for liquor related crimes and 49 suspects arrested on drug-related charges,” said Makhele.
All 278 suspects are expected to appear in different magistrate’s courts in the province while further investigations will be conducted to establish possible linkage of the suspects to other crimes.
During the operation one firearm with ammunition and ten dangerous weapons were confiscated. “These firearms will be sent for ballistic testing to determine if they were not used in the commission of other crimes,” said Makhele.
Four stolen vehicles were also recovered during the week and a total number of 838, J534 fines were issued. Drugs and liquor were also among the confiscated products of the week.
Provincial Commissioner of the Free State, Lt-Gen Baile Motswenyane, said that the removal of one illegal firearm from the hands of the criminals and confiscation of drugs from drug lords will save many lives.
Compiled by Pierce van Heerden