The 69 000 mandrax tablets seized by the police could increase tensions and spark a turf war between drug dealers on the Cape Flats. Picture: SAPS/Supplied
Cape Town - The 69 000 mandrax tablets seized by the police during an intelligence-driven operation could increase tensions and spark a turf war between drug dealers on the Cape Flats.

Police officers investigating the lucrative drug trade in gang-infested areas on the Cape Flats said the bust had robbed a drug dealer who was supposed to receive the mandrax tablets with a street value worth more R2million. Investigators said the bust on Thursday night on the N2 would lead to increased turf wars among rival gangs.

Police spokesperson Novela Potelwa said: “While strategically deployed along the N2 highway, members of the Flying Squad pulled over a vehicle in the vicinity of Spine Road near Khayelitsha.

“They found 69000 mandrax tablets packed in a thousand plastic bags. A 45-year-old suspect was arrested and is expected to appear today in court on charges of possession and dealing in drugs.”

Police officers investigating the lucrative drug trade in gang-infested areas on the Cape Flats said the bust had robbed a drug dealer who was supposed to receive the mandrax tablets. Picture: Supplied

A report released in August last year by Don Pinnock, a research fellow and criminologist at the Centre for Criminology at UCT, indicated that Cape Town and South Africa’s drug problem had escalated.

“At present the country is simply placing a potentially dangerous market into the hands of criminal syndicates and international traffickers. It is not known exactly how many gangs there are in this province, but gang membership is estimated at more than 100000.

“Almost all the gangs concentrated in Cape Town make the bulk of their money from procuring and selling drugs,” the report read.

Lentegeur community policing forum chairperson Byron de Villiers said: “A drug merchant was deprived of his consignment. At this stage we don’t know who that drug dealer is but a flare-up of violence will pinpoint him. Currently there’s a turf war between the 28s and the Hard Livings gangs in Beacon Valley.”

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