Police seize cigarettes worth R22m after tip-off

2017-02-15 11:46
Cigarettes. (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

Cigarettes. (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

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Johannesburg - Law enforcement authorities confiscated cigarettes worth an estimated R22m on Tuesday, the City of Johannesburg said on Wednesday.

MMC for public safety Michael Sun said officers from the Johannesburg Metro Police Department (JMPD) and the South African Police Service (SAPS) received a tip-off that cigarettes were being suspiciously off-loaded at a storage facility in Fortune Street, City Deep.

When the officers arrived they discovered 10 male suspects unloading boxes from a truck which had been hijacked on the N3 near Heidelberg.

Sun said the truck was transporting cigarettes worth approximately R22m.

Two suspects were arrested and eight fled the scene.

He said the hijacking of high-value merchandise was a planned and syndicated crime comprising of a chain of criminal activities such as the storage, transport and reselling of stolen goods and laundering of money thereafter.

The ill-gotten proceeds would also be used to fund an array of other criminal activities, Sun said.

"I commend the JMPD and the SAPS officers for their effort in recovering this high-value merchandise and apprehending two of the suspects."

He said he looked forward to a positive outcome from the SAPS's investigation.

"These joint efforts between JMPD and SAPS prove effective and must continue in order to crack down on syndicates and criminals in the City of Johannesburg."

Read more on:    johannesburg  |  crime
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