UPDATE: OR Tambo security crunch 'showing results'

2017-07-14 14:24
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Cape Town - Travellers heading to OR Tambo should continue to be vigilant in the face of a crackdown on crime in and around the airport over the last few weeks.

On Tuesday the South African Police Service (SAPS) met with all airport security parties concerned to discuss measures to tackle the situation that could severely impact South Africa's lucrative tourism industry, at the very source of the country's busiest airport. 

As a result a special task team was put in place, with SAPS confirming on Friday 14 July, that the heightened approach to safety and security at OR Tambo International Airport is already yielding results.

SEE: UPDATE: OR Tambo Airport to get dedicated security task team

SAPS spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Katlego Mogale on Thursday said the multi-disciplinary, interdepartmental approach was introduced this week to root out criminals and criminality in the precinct of OR Tambo airport.

Mogale said members of the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DPCI) and Customs officials at the cargo section of the airport intercepted a consignment of hair products, including shampoo. 

During the verification of the cargo, tests were conducted on the shampoo and a positive result for cocaine was achieved.

“The consignment, with an estimated weight of 200kg and an estimated street value of R50 million, was seized.  The consignment was destined for Australia from Sao Paolo,” said Mogale.

No arrest was made in this regard but investigations are continuing.

Also on Thursday, members of the Gauteng Flying Squad on patrol along the N3 in the Germiston area noticed a white VW Golf 7 GTI with KZN registration plates. 

Mogale said the vehicle was being driven recklessly at high speed on the N3 North towards Pretoria. Members immediately gave chase and were able to stop the suspicious vehicle.  

“Upon searching the vehicle, the members found three unlicensed firearms - an AK47 with ammunition in the magazine as well as additional ammunition inside a bag, a R5 rifle with ammunition in the magazine, a 9mm pistol with ammunition as well as extra ammunition in a bag.”

SEE: ALERT: OR Tambo warns passengers of 'follow-home' crime issue

Both occupants of the vehicle, aged 35 and 50 years, were arrested and will appear in court on charges relating to the possession of unlicensed firearms, ammunition and possibly a suspected stolen vehicle. 

“Investigations are continuing to determine if the suspects are linked to any other crimes,” said Mogale.

The suspects will appear at the Palm Ridge Magistrate’s Court soon.

In another incident on the N12, between Jet Park and Kraft road off-ramps, police members picked up a suspicious white BMW. 

The vehicle was stopped and the police discovered it had a false Free State registration number. 

When the vehicle check was done, it was discovered that it was hijacked in Norkem Park two months ago.  Police also discovered two unlicensed firearms with ammunition. The suspect was arrested.

Mogale said this multi-disciplinary intervention will continue. He commended the team on their commitment to fighting crime.

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(Source: SA news.gov.za)