Police crack down on stock theft

2018-12-14 06:00
PHOTO: suppliedPolice intercepted a truck coming from Matatiele that was carrying stolen cattle.

PHOTO: suppliedPolice intercepted a truck coming from Matatiele that was carrying stolen cattle.

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POLICE revealed plans to intensify their operations this festive season to curb cross-border livestock theft between South Africa and Lesotho in the area of Matatiele.

On November 30, the Kokstad Stock Theft Unit intercepted a truck from Matatiele loaded with 19 cattle.

The stock was suspected to have been stolen from Lesotho and were taken across the border to South Africa, according to Matatiele police spokesperson Captain Raphael Motloung.

He said the 19 cows were to be sold in Kokstad.

“During the verification process, it was noticed from the transportation documentation that the stock was going to be sold and was probably stolen. On further enquiry, police liaised with the Lesotho Commissioner and it came to light that the cattle came from Lesotho,” said Motloung.

He further said, on Friday, the police from Lesotho came with complaints and dockets from people who indentified the cattle as theirs.

“The seller was called and he could not give a satisfactory account on possession of the stock. Later he admitted to having received the stock unlawfully from Lesotho,” said Motloung.

He said the man also admitted that he fraudulently wrote his own document of sale and he was then arrested.

Motloung said all the animals were handed back to their lawful owners and a case of stock theft was registered.

He said police will conduct various operations, including road blocks as well as stop and search operations, to combat stock theft.

He asked livestock owners to be vigilant and take control of their stock and assist police in curbing theft of livestock.

The Captain also advised stock owners to brand their stock and warned people not to buy or accept any stolen livestock from criminals.

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