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Police intercept omalayitsha vehicles, recover R1m contraband

by Staff reporter
21 Sep 2019 at 06:58hrs | Views
POLICE in Matabeleland South have arrested 16 suspects and recovered contraband worth nearly R1 million after intercepting 14 vehicles during an ongoing anti-smuggling operation.

Police in the province are conducting anti-smuggling operation following an upsurge in cases of smuggling at the country's borders.

In an interview yesterday, national police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said basic commodities constituted most of the recovered items.

"The Matabeleland South anti-smuggling team intercepted 14 vehicles which were carrying smuggled goods into the country from South Africa. Total value of the smuggled goods is R946 961. Police also arrested 16 suspects in connection with smuggling on September 15, 2019. The suspects include cross border traders, omalayitsha and individuals," said Asst Comm Nyathi.  

He said the recovered commodities include rice, cooking oil, sugar, engine oil, cement, bars of soap and flour among other goods.  Asst Comm Nyathi said police will not rest until sanity prevails at the country's borders.

"Accused persons were handed over to customs officials where a total of $54 439, R18 395, US$57 excise duty was paid. Some of the goods are still being cleared by the responsible authority.

"We urge the public to comply with the law to avoid inconveniences," said Asst Comm Nyathi.  

He said police will continue with the operation in consultation with other stakeholders until all importers comply with the country's laws.  

"Smuggling is impacting negatively on Government's revenue collection and as police we will not stand by and allow Government to be shortchanged by smugglers," said Asst Comm Nyathi.

He said police had also recovered vehicles that were being smuggled into the country through illegal entry points along the Limpopo River.

Source - chronicle

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