JOHANNESBURG – In an on-going multidisciplinary, proactive fight against crime in and around ORTIA, members of the Customs Division of the South African Revenue Service (SARS) and the Crime Intelligence Division of the SAPS arrested four suspects after they were found to be in the possession of drugs.
This and many other successes have been the result of the multidisciplinary task team, which has been established to fight crimes at the airport and keep it safe. The task team consists of members of the Department of Home Affairs, SARS, the Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Police Department (EMPD), Airports Company South Africa, the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, and ORTIA, among members of other organisations.
The four suspects, aged between 20 and 35, were arrested this past weekend. Two of the arrested suspects are believed to be drug mules who swallowed narcotics and had to be taken to a nearby hospital. The X-rays revealed that the suspects had swallowed foreign objects. The suspects were held for observation until the condom bullets, which contained the drugs, were retrieved. The third suspect was arrested after his luggage was randomly selected for inspection purposes. Cocaine was found in his check-in luggage.
The fourth suspect was arrested after information was received in a joint operation between the Crime Intelligence Division, the Operational Response Services Division, the National Intervention Unit and the members of the Customs Division of SARS. During the operation, the unidentified suspect and the bag were taken to the Customs search area for inspection purposes. Drugs, suspected to be cocaine, were found concealed in more than 20 fruit cans in his bag.
The EMPD’s team has increased visibility by keeping the traffic into and out of the airport flowing. They have effectively managed to tow illegally parked vehicles and have issued fines. The multidisciplinary task team will continue its operations in and around the airport to combat crime and criminality, and to prevent the proliferation of drugs into the country.
All the suspects will appear in the Kempton Park Magistrate’s Court today for the possession of illegal drugs and for possession with the intent to distribute drugs.