Police rescue tortoise during R36m hashish bust

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st P5SEC drugbustTORTOISE133 INLSA SAVED: NSPCA inspector Wendy Willson from the Wildlife Unit and Constable Deon Bothma of the West Rand K9 Unit with the tortoise, which was named Nonhlanhla, meaning lucky girl.


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hashish worth R36 million was recovered and a 50-year-old tortoise rescued at the weekend when police raided a storage facility in southern Joburg.

According to police spokesman Captain Dennis Adriao, information provided had led members of the Hawks, criminal intelligence and customs to the warehouses of a freight service company in Tulisa Park on Saturday afternoon.

There, they uncovered 1.1 tons of hashish, believed to be destined for international markets.

“From our investigations, we believe it came into South Africa from various international destinations and was destined for international markets,” said Adriao. “We seized it before it could be dispatched.”

st drugbust137 BUSTED: Police with the R36m of hashish found in a warehouse on Saturday after a tip-off. INLSA

Also in the warehouse was a 50-year-old tortoise, believed to be from the East Coast, penned in among the drugs, with neither water nor food.

Police rescued her and named her Nonhlanhla, meaning “lucky girl”. She had been given to the SPCA “in hopes that she doesn’t land up in a soup dish in Asia”, Adriao said.

But despite the size of the haul, no arrests were made.

“The Hawks are still busy with their investigations, but we anticipate the possibility of arrests in the future,” Adriao said.

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