PE K9 unit arrest suspected copper cable thieves

2019-05-22 06:01
The copper cables which were stolen near Whyteleaf and Chase Streets in Algoa Park.   Photo:SUPPLIED

The copper cables which were stolen near Whyteleaf and Chase Streets in Algoa Park. Photo:SUPPLIED

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TWO men from New Brighton were recently apprehended by the PE K9 unit for cable theft when police dog, Jack, unsuspectingly pounced on them in Algoa Park.

According to police spokesperson, Colonel Priscilla Naidu, the PE K9 unit members received information from the Nelson Mandela Municipality’s Surveillance Unit about two men busy in the bushes near Whyteleaf and Chase Streets in Algoa Park.

“Sgt Volente Baatjies, her dog, Jack, and her colleague met the Surveillance Unit close to the scene for a briefing and plan of action.

“The K9 members tactically approached the area through a ravine and dense bush to where the suspects were digging. As soon as the suspects spotted the police, they made a dash to evade arrest, but a further two members of the Surveillance Unit acted as a stopper to prevent the suspects from escaping. This allowed Jack to apprehend both men. The damage is estimated to be about R10 000,” Naidu said.

Both suspects, aged 21 and 55, were detained under the Criminal Matters Amendment Act (tampering, damaging and theft of essential infrastructure).

They are expected to appear in court soon.

Prior to digging up the cables, thieves had cut the cables from the pylon at this particular spot.

In an effort to curb the ongoing theft, the municipality installed alarm sensors on the pylons.

In April 2018, almost 300m of copper cable was stolen from this area, valued at over R300 000.

Naidu added, “This cable is a vital communication medium between different electrical sub- stations, monitoring the ‘health’ of such sub- stations by the electricity directorate.

“Without a functional communication link, the municipality has no remote control over substations.”

Mount Road Cluster Commander, Major General Thembisile Patekile, commended the collaborative action. “We are also appealing to scrap metal dealers to inform us when these cables are brought in for sale,” Patekile said.

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