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Limpopo Police Arrest Two Suspects in Anti-Smuggling Operation



In a decisive anti-smuggling operation, police in Limpopo arrested two suspects, aged 32 and 33, for possession of suspected stolen motor vehicles. The operation, conducted from Sunday to Monday, highlights the ongoing efforts to curb vehicle theft and smuggling in the region.

Anti-Smuggling Operation Details

The operation, launched in the Capricorn District, was a coordinated effort by the Limpopo SAPS provincial anti-smuggling task team and the Capricorn District flying squad. According to provincial police spokesperson, Colonel Malesela Ledwaba, the team received a tip-off about two vehicles intended to be smuggled into Zimbabwe through the Beitbridge port of entry.

“Following the information, the team swiftly responded. Two vehicles, a grey Toyota Fortuner 2.8 and a white Toyota Hilux GD6 double cab, were spotted on the R71 from Boyne, in the Mankweng policing area, heading towards Polokwane,” Ledwaba explained.

Recovery of Stolen Vehicles

Upon intercepting the vehicles, police officers found that the drivers could not provide valid documentation. A further investigation revealed that both vehicles were fitted with false registration number plates and licence discs.

The grey Toyota Fortuner 2.8, valued at R900,000, was reported stolen in Muldersdrift, Gauteng, on June 22, 2024. The white Toyota Hilux GD6 double cab, worth R700,000, was reported stolen in Brooklyn, Pretoria, on the same day. The combined value of the recovered vehicles is estimated at R1.6 million.


Arrest and Ongoing Investigations

The two suspects were arrested on the spot for possession of presumed stolen motor vehicles. They are scheduled to appear before the Mankweng Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday. Police investigations into the case are still ongoing.

Commendation from Provincial Commissioner

Lieutenant General Thembi Hadebe, the provincial commissioner of police in Limpopo, commended the law enforcement team for their vigilance and effective action. “I applaud the officers for always being alert and hands-on in dealing with criminality within the province,” Hadebe stated.

Background: Previous Incidents

This operation follows a similar case last year, when Shane Mthombeni, a 35-year-old South African man, was sentenced to six years in prison for attempting to smuggle a stolen Toyota Fortuner to Zimbabwe. Mthombeni was intercepted at the Nyl Toll Plaza on the N1 Highway.

Brigadier Hlulani Mashaba, provincial spokesperson for the SAPS in Limpopo, highlighted the importance of coordinated efforts between police and private security companies in tackling vehicle smuggling.

This successful operation underscores the ongoing commitment of Limpopo’s law enforcement to combat vehicle theft and smuggling, ensuring the safety and security of the community.



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