A man and a woman have been arrested at the Lebombo Border post between Mozambique and South Africa for allegedly being in possession of drugs, liquor, and cash.
The suspects aged 48 and 50 are Mozambican nationals.
Mpumalanga police spokesperson Leonard Hlathi says the two suspects will appear at the Komatipoort Magistrate’s court on Tuesday.
“It was during the morning when police, as well as customs officials, were doing their routine duties when they stopped a truck that was coming from Mozambique and entering South Africa. They searched the truck and inside it they discovered it had a false compartment in the truck itself and as well the trailer that was pulled by the truck… they collectively discovered suspected heroin as well as crystal meth.”
Over 200 000 cases of contraventions registered in SA under lockdown: Cele
Police Minister Bheki Cele says that those arrested were either issued with fines or released on a warning.
Cele says the Western Cape, Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, and Gauteng have had the most cases of the contravention of lockdown regulations.
He says more than 230 000 people have been charged for lockdown breaches, with the Western Cape recording both the highest number of coronavirus infections and arrests during the lockdown period.
Cele says towards the end of April while the country was still on Level 5 lockdown, about 107 000 cases were opened with 118 000 people charged for contravention of the lockdown regulations.
The Minister says the number of contravention has now doubled to almost 230 000. The contraventions include:
- Liquor related offences and cigarette-related offences
- Illegal gatherings
- Failure to confine to place of residence
- Cross border and inter-provincial movement
- Transport related offences
- Fraudulent or no permits
Cele says that those arrested were either issued with fines or released on a warning. The minister has also applauded the taxi industry for improving in terms of compliance with lockdown regulations.
He said in a statement that criminals have taken advantage of the lockdown to expand their illegal activities; especially concerning the ban on the sale of alcohol and cigarettes.
“We have also observed an increase in smuggling of contraband (liquor and tobacco) between South Africa’s land borders with Botswana, eSwatini, Lesotho, Mozambique, and Zimbabwe, as well as the sale of these products in the black market,” Cele said.
He added that the SANDF has confiscated illegal alcohol and cigarettes at SA borders to the value of R1.07 million.