Six police officers arrested for alleged corruption along the border post between South Africa and Zimbabwe in Musina, Limpopo, are expected to make their first appearance at the local magistrate’s court Monday morning.
Deputy Provincial Police Commissioner responsible for crime detection in Limpopo Samuel Manala says the arrests relate to the smuggling of illicit cigarettes into the country.
Manala says the police officers who are attached to the Tshamutumbu police station were arrested on Friday during an intensive operation.
“Six police members were arrested as a result of culmination of intensive investigation following several complaints from the public about police officials deployed along the borderline being involved in various acts of corrupt activities of assisting syndicate involved in illicit smuggling of cigarettes. The members allegedly created a safer passage for the smugglers to enter the country illegally.”
Earlier this year, Police Minister Bheki Cele said there should be better coordination and alignment between South Africa and its neighbours to combat cross-border crimes.
Crackdown in Sandton in 2021
In November last year, Gauteng police seized a consignment of illicit cigarettes worth around R10 million and arrested five men in Sandton.
Police responded to information from crime intelligence and swooped on the suspects at Grayston Square.
Police Spokesperson Dimakatso Sello said the arrests were part of their efforts to fight the illicit trade in cigarettes.
Sello said, “Crime intelligence information was operationalised by Provincial Organised unit, West Rand K9 and Customs from SARS. The team stopped and searched a truck with five occupants at Greyston Square whereby a consignment of illicit cigarettes was discovered.”
“The illicit cigarettes estimated to approximately R10 million were seized and the five arrested suspects are expected to appear before Sandton Magistrate’s Court soon on a charge of possession of illicit cigarettes. Police investigation continues,” added Sello.