THE Eastern Cape police have, over the past seven days, arrested 1 288 suspects in different clusters through police driven operations and enhanced visibility aimed at maximising the safety of the citizens and their property throughout festive season.
The 1 288 suspects were arrested on various charges ranging from murder (45), attempted murder (11), robberies (35), assault (188), burglary (45), contact crimes (57) and property related crimes (103).
In a statement by the Eastern Cape police today, spokesman Captain Khaya Tonjeni said the festive season was characterised with a spike in festivity like traditional ceremonies and other social events that brought people together.
“The stock thieves are also trying their best to make a quick buck during this time by stealing other people’s stock for consumption and resale. The police have arrested at least 44 suspects for theft of stock, possession of suspected stolen stock and being in possession of stock without the necessary documentation.:
He said he police was asking members of the public to refrain from buying meat and stock from unscrupulous dealers “since this act is providing a market for this type of crime. The police will have no option but to arrest the seller and the buyer in such instances.”
Police arrested 30 suspects for illegally dealing in liquor and also managed confiscated about 6 700 litres of alcohol from illegal dealers and members of the public found drinking in public and contributing to public disorder. Drugs to the tune of R70 000 were confiscated that included mandrax, dagga, cocaine, meth and khat.
Nine suspects were arrested for possession of illegal firearms while 42 illegal firearms and 198 units of ammunition were also confiscated. The firearms will be sent for ballistic test to ascertain whether these had previously been used in the commissioning of a crime.
Tonjeni said the suspects would appear before the courts.
The members were thanked for ensuring the safety of the citizens and their safety during these operations and the Eastern Cape Provincial Commissioner Lieutenant General Liziwe Ntshinga re-affirmed her commitment of keeping Eastern Cape citizens safe.
“We have police in all the critical places and this must remain the status quo. There must be no space for criminals to operate. She also pleaded with the public to exercise caution when driving and be patient when approaching police road blocks and operations, as these initiatives are undertaken to ensure safety of the citizens and our visitors.”