Bellville cop implicated in alleged theft of 18 guns, court set to hear details

Information relating to the alleged theft of 18 firearms by a constable from the Bellville South police station, is expected to be revealed in the Bellville Magistrate's Court next Tuesday when the officer applies for bail.

Hawks spokesperson Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi said that several firearms handed in as exhibits and deemed for destruction went missing from a storeroom at the police station in August 2017.

The theft was linked to the 34-year-old constable after SAPS Vispol members confiscated two firearms that were linked to the 18 firearms, Mulaudzi said.

READ: More ex-cops now part of Western Cape guns-to-gangs saga

The constable was accused of having participated in the theft of the firearms and was arrested on Monday.

He made his first appearance in the Bellville Magistrate's Court on Wednesday, however Mulaudzi said his identity would only be revealed during the bail application.

He added that the missing weapons were at the centre of a police investigation.

Call for suspension, no bail

The South African National Civic Organisation (Sanco) called for the immediate suspension of the police officer and demanded that his bail application be refused.

Sanco spokesperson Motlalepula Rosho said ridding the police service of corrupt officials, who supply guns to gangsters and criminal syndicates, would restore the confidence of communities in the police.

"It is outrageous that police officials are, in some cases, suppliers of guns responsible for the deaths of innocent law-abiding citizens and actual beneficiaries of criminality," Rosho said

She said that the "cancer of corruption" and the war against violent organised crime should first be won within the police service before it could be won in communities.

"Nothing less than a major clean-up will restore the credibility and integrity of the South African Police Service," she added.

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