KING WILLIAM’S TOWN – Concerted efforts by police to rid Eastern Cape of rampant crime had been awarded when 996 suspects were arrested over the past seven days through well organised interventions under Operation Safer Festive Season.

Out of the 996 suspects, ten were arrested for rape, 145 assault GBH, 50 burglary, 13 murder, 50 for burglary, 40 assault common, 28 robberies just to mention a few. Our approach was directed at hitting hard on the primary generators of crime namely alcohol and drug abuse. Seventy two (72) suspects were apprehended for drinking in public while fourteen (14) were taken in for illegal dealing in liquor. A total of 20300 litres of home brewed concoction was also destroyed during these operations. Thirty thousand (30 000) litres of alcohol was also taken from illegal alcohol traders.

Eighty (80) kg of Cannabis, 295 kg of crystal meth 1.16 kg of cocaine and 1109 mandrax tablets were also confiscated in different places. Eighty eight (88) suspects were arrested for drug related charges.

A total of 128, J534 fines were issued to the value of R45 000. Also, 136 traffic fines to the value of R39 000 were issued to motorists who did not comply with road rules.

Illegal trade costs the country huge amounts of revenue and as a result police have a responsibility to visit second hand goods as well as guard our borders and entry points of contraband. At least 189 cellphones, 3792 items of counterfeit goods and fake money to the value of R3785.00 were also recovered.

In the fight against proliferation of illegal firearms and dangerous weapons, seven (07) suspects were arrested for illegal possession of firearms while twelve (12) firearms and seventy two (72) items of ammunition were taken for illegal hands. All these firearms will be taken for ballistic testing to determine their previous use in commission of crime.

In an effort to fight contact crimes, 247 knives were confiscated. Eastern Cape Provincial Commissioner, Lt Gen Liziwe Ntshinga applauded the arrests. Operation Safer festive Season must continue to make our citizens safe including their property from criminals, said Lt Gen Ntshinga.

Source: South African Police Service