Sawoti man in court over huge dagga haul

2011-07-15 00:00

MEMBERS of the police crime prevention unit responded to a tip-off and raided the home of Musawenkosi Petros Tshozi (51) near Sawoti before midnight on July 3.

They allegedly seized R32 000 in cash and dagga estimated to be worth hundreds of thousands of rands.

Tshozi appeared in the Sawoti Magistrate’s Court on Monday, July 4, on a charge of dealing in dagga.

He was remanded in police custody until July 25.

Police allegedly obtained Tshozi’s permission to search his premises and discovered about 100 dagga plants laid out on the floor to dry, containers with dagga seeds ready for cultivation, and seven 220-litre drums filled with dagga leaves.

Sawoti police station commander Captain Bheki Mbanjwa praised the officers and urged them to activate their informer network to ensure that drug dealers in the area are put behind bars.

“We need to protect our youth by ensuring that they do not gain access to drugs.

“The dealers are only interested in making money even though they are aware that drugs ruin lives and destroy families” said the station commander.

Captain Vincent Pandaram, communications officer for the SAPS Port Shepstone cluster, said that lthough there are not many drug busts in rural areas of the South Coast, “We come across dagga plantations on open fields in the deep regions which we destroy. These areas are notorious for the cultivation and wholesale of the drug.”

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How times change

Before U.S. oil and forestry lobby groups made the growth of cannabis illegal in the U.S. in 1937, the plant provided cheap and durable hemp fibre and bio-fuel. English and Dutch citizens even had to cultivate cannabis by order of the King. “Tincture of cannabis” was also the basis for almost every medicine before aspirin and is still used today.

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