Three suspects will appear in the Vredenburg Regional Court on drug possession charges after they were arrested in a joint operation last Wednesday (14 December).
According to a statement by the provincial Department of Community Safety, the Swartland K9 Unit and the police’s West Coast Rural Flying Squad were conducting an operation just outside Langebaan on the R27, when officers stopped a vehicle that was suspected to be transporting illegal narcotics.
Upon searching the vehicle, the K9’s sharp sense of smell led officers to the discovery of 4 000 mandrax tablets with has an estimated street value of R160 000. The drugs were confiscated, and three suspects were arrested for dealing in drugs. They are expected to appear in court soon, although a date for the appearance could not be established when this article was published.
“Criminals should be aware that we are present and that we are relentless in our efforts to rid our communities of illegal activities,” warned Reagen Allen, provincial minister of Police Oversight and Community Safety.
“Our K9 units, in partnership with all relevant stakeholders, which among others includes the other law enforcement agencies, police, private security, neighbourhood watches, community police forums and farm watches are proving to be influential against crime. We are fully aware that we have a long way to go, but these continued interruptions are critical, as our aim is to make the lives of all criminals very uncomfortable. We will monitor the work of the national judicial system to ensure that the work of our law enforcement authorities is followed through to successful prosecution.”
The K9 Unit’s main objective is to serve as a crime fighting force multiplier to the police and other role-players. The unit does this through the detection and searching for contraband, particularly illegal drugs, firearms and ammunition. It also provides assistance to the national Department of Forestry, Fisheries and Environmental Affairs to curb the illegal trade of abalone, crayfish and other marine products.
“Although many people might be on holiday and taking a well-deserved break, our officers and man’s best friend will continue to be visible, as they know how important their presence is across the province,” Allen said. “We have to persevere in our fight against these criminal elements, as this will help establish safer environments which leads to safer roads, coastlines and communities.”