R9m abalone bust made near Langebaan

2016-04-18 21:11
(Picture: Supplied)

(Picture: Supplied)

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Cape Town - Two Chinese nationals were arrested on a smallholding near Langebaan on Monday morning in a R9m abalone bust, Western Cape police said.

Spokesperson Constable Noloyiso Rwexana said in a statement that members of the organised crime and K9 units along with officials of the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries responded to a tip-off about suspected illegal activity on the property.

"At approximately 07:00, they entered a warehouse situated alongside Langebaan Road where they uncovered an illegal abalone processing facility.

"Various rooms were found inside the building, including a cooking area, drying rooms, a sorting room and living quarters," she said.

"Numerous items of equipment used in the cooking and drying process were recovered which included large steel cooking pots, gas burners and cylinders, scales of different sizes, fans, drying shelves and temperature meters."

Further investigations led to the discovery of three rooms that were being equipped as hydroponic laboratories.

Lights, reflectors, fans and other items of equipment were confiscated.

"At the rear of the building a hothouse was found in which various dagga plants were growing. [A total of] 37 936 units of dried abalone and five units of wet shucked abalone weighing 2 185.90kg were seized.”

The suspects, aged 31 and 35, were found on site and arrested.

They are expected to appear in the Hopefield Magistrate's Court on Tuesday on charges relating to the Marine Living Resources Act.

Read more on:    cape town  |  crime

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