Former police officer Pule Clyde Ningiza (51) will be swopping his police uniform for a prison uniform after getting caught with his hand in the cookie jar.
On Friday, 12 May, the Commercial Crime Court in Bloemfontein sentenced him to 21 years in prison.
The court found Ningiza guilty on charges of drug dealing, defeating the ends of justice and money laundering.
The accused held the rank of warrant officer. He was stationed at the Heidedal police precinct in Bloemfontein at the time of committing the crimes.
Ningiza was sentenced to ten years for drug dealing and eight years for corruption. For money laundering he received two years, and one year for defeating the ends of justice.
Capt. S’fiso Nyakane, the Hawks’ provincial spokesperson, said the disgraced officer would serve an effective 14 years behind bars. He said the eight-year sentence for corruption, suspended for four years, would run concurrently with the two years for money laundering.
Nyakane said Ningiza had been arrested following an intensive undercover investigation in March 2010.
He said the investigation had been initiated following suspicions that Ningiza had been using a police vehicle in criminal activities.
Nyakane said the use of the government vehicle was confirmed when Ningiza had agreed to escort a car transporting three bags of dagga to Kimberley in the Northern Cape.
Nyakane said two undercover police agents had met Ningiza at the Mahungra Car Wash on the corner of the N8 and McGregor Road in Bloemfontein.
The two undercover agents said they wanted to transport dagga to Kimberley and requested Ninginza to transport three bags of dagga, valued at R2 400, out of Bloemfontein.
Nyakane said Ningiza had agreed to escort the car out of Bloemfontein in return for R500.
“Ningiza, who was wearing a police uniform and driving a marked police vehicle, instructed the agents to follow him down Nelson Mandela Drive.
“They stopped about 2 km from the Bainsvlei police station, where he got his payment and the agents were allowed to go,” he said.
Nyakane said the undercover agents had then phoned the investigating officer, who arrested Ningiza.