Durban - Just hours after being given the Tracker award on Wednesday for recovering the most stolen vehicles in KwaZulu-Natal, Warrant Officer Ganas “Tiger” Ramsamy was thrown in the thick of it when a tracking device on a car - stolen a week ago - started transmitting a signal.
It would lead him to one of the most peculiar finds in his decorated career.
The signal led Ramsamy and his team at the Integrated Vehicle Tracking Task Team to a house in uMlazi’s F-Section where the dismantled parts of a Toyota Yaris, stolen in Morningside on Monday last week, were found in a bedroom.
Still dressed in his smart collared shirt, black tie and formal pants, Ramsamy said it was the first time he had come across pieces of an entire car inside a house.
“Only the chassis was missing,” he said. “Everything else was there in the room.”
Officers arrived at the three-bedroom house an hour after the signal had begun emitting.
The tracking device had been tampered with after the car was stolen, preventing it from emitting a signal. For some reason it began emitting a signal on Wednesday, police said.
No one was at the house when police arrived but officers found the keys to the house on top of a chicken coop.
Two of the rooms in the house had beds in them and appeared to be lived in, while the third room was used to store the stolen parts.
Police are now on the hunt for the occupants of the house.
Yesterday Ramsamy, who earned the nickname Tiger for his unrelenting pursuit of criminals, picked up the Tracker award for recovering the most vehicles (189) between June last year and July this year.
It is the third time in a row that he has received the provincial award.
Three years ago he was named South Africa’s top vehicle finder after recovering 168 hijacked or stolen vehicles fitted with Tracker devices.
“I don’t think of myself as a hero or anything. This is my job and I love it,” he said. “I wake up every morning with one thing on my mind and that is putting hijackers in jail.”
The award for the officer who went beyond the call of duty went to Warrant Officer Andre Visser of the Pietermaritzburg Public Order Policing unit.
Visser was praised for always being ready to help recover stolen or hijacked vehicles - even on his days off.
“I have to thank my wife for putting up with me,” Visser said shortly after receiving the award. “I am always away at odd hours looking for stolen vehicles and she is my strength. I am grateful for her for understanding.”