295 Rounds of ammunition and 31 firearms recovered

Police load weapons in large sacks before destroying them at Arcelor Mittal's steel processing plant in Vereeniging on Tuesday, 5 February 2013. The weapons came from police searches. Others had been used to commit crimes, but the cases these originated from had all been finalised. The 3364 firearms and around 1000 knives were melted down.They included rifles, pistols, knives, swords and axes. Picture: Werner Beukes/SAPA

King William’s Town: Efforts to fight the proliferation of illegal firearms in the Eastern Cape have once again resulted in 295 rounds of ammunition and 31 firearms, inclusive of pistols, rifles and homemade firearms, being recovered during the past week. Nineteen (19) suspects were arrested for illegal possession of firearms and ammunition, while two more were arrested for pointing of a firearm. They have appeared in various courts across the province. The recovered firearms have been sent for ballistic tests to establish if they were used in any other crimes in the province and/or country.

The suspects are amongst the 1 116 suspects arrested for various crimes across the province. Of this total, 200 suspects were arrested for crimes detected as a result of police action – 166 for drug related crimes and 34 for driving under the influence of alcohol/ drugs.

“We will continue with our targeted and informed deployment of resources to ensure that those who continue to terrorise innocent people are brought to book. I encourage community members to share information about anyone who may have illegal firearms in their communities. Family members who are keeping firearms belonging to deceased relatives must hand them over to the police while making necessary arrangements for new licenses to possess them,” said Eastern Cape Provincial Commissioner, Lt Gen Liziwe Ntshinga.

Eastern Cape SAPS Management has also noted with great concern the increasing but isolated number of violent incidents at the taxi ranks in the Buffalo City Municipality Metropolitan area. Two separate incidents have been reported where two people were fatally wounded and one seriously injured during the shooting at the Mdantsane and Braelyn taxi ranks.

Police will not speculate on the cause of the violent shootings. All the cases are under investigation by Provincial Organised Crime, led by Brigadier Sibidla.

“We commit ourselves to uproot taxi violence and put the safety of commuters first by arresting those in the taxi industry who have no regard for law and order. Intolerance and violence is unacceptable. ”, said Eastern Cape Provincial Commissioner, Lt Gen Liziwe Ntshinga following the recent shooting incidents reported in Mdantsane and East London.

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