Constable arrested for theft at funeral parlour

2015-10-09 09:51
(File, Saps)

(File, Saps)

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Pietermaritzburg - A police officer was arrested for allegedly attempting to steal a lowering device from a Pietermaritzburg funeral parlour on Wednesday.

The police constable from the Mountain Rise police station was allegedly caught red-handed by members of the K9 unit while escaping the scene with the stolen property.

Police said the constable tried to steal the device, used for lowering coffins into the ground during funerals, from the AVBOB Funeral Services premises on Pietermaritz Street on Wednesday afternoon.

In casual clothing, the off-duty constable was let into the premises by an accomplice, who is believed to be an employee at the funeral service. After loading the equipment into the vehicle, the constable exited the gates when members of the K9 unit pounced.

Pietermaritzburg police spokesperson Mthokozisi Ngobese confirmed the police officer was arrested during “an intelligence-driven” operation after they were leaked information about a theft that was going to take place at AVBOB.

“The constable was found in possession of the stolen lowering device which belongs to AVBOB. He was arrested thereafter,” Ngobese said.

Ngobese said the arrest has been brought to the attention of Mountain Rise’s acting station commander Colonel Boxer Pillay so that internal departmental action can be taken against the officer. “We do not condone any criminal act by a police officer whether he is on duty or not,” Ngobese said.

uMgungundlovu North cluster spokesperson Captain Gay Ebrahim, whose jurisdiction includes Mountain Rise police station, would not comment on the arrest, diverting comment to Ngobese instead.

AVBOB group communication manager Marius du Plessis said the company “regrets” to confirm that there was an incident at their Pietermaritzburg branch “where a person who is not known to [AVBOB] tried to steal a lowering device”.

“Before the person in question got away with the equipment he was apprehended and arrested. The SAPS is investigating the matter and I cannot confirm at this stage whether or not he was assisted by anybody or not,” Du Plessis said.

The constable was due to appear in the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court on Thursday but the case was reverted to the Senior Public Prosecutor for a decision.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  crime

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