Durban - POLICE have recovered one of the eight provincial Department of
Agriculture state vehicles that were stolen at the department’s Ndwedwe offices on February 10.
Another state-owned vehicle that was stolen at Taylor’s Halt, west of Pietermaritzburg, in September 2019 has also been recovered.
Members of the Plessislaer Vehicle Tracking and Investigation Unit found the vehicles.
Police spokesperson Brigadier Jay Naicker said police from the unit, acting on intelligence regarding a “chop shop” operating in the Plessislaer policing area, had proceeded to the location and conducted a search.
“Police officers found an Isuzu bakkie on the premises and further investigation established that the
vehicle had been stolen at Ndwedwe. The vehicle was one of eight government-owned vehicles that were stolen at Ndwedwe during a robbery at
the offices of the Department of
Agriculture,” Naicker said.
“During a further search of the premises in Plessislaer, police officers also seized a VW. Preliminary investigations revealed that the vehicle was also a government-owned vehicle, which was stolen in the Taylor’s Halt area during September 2019.”
Naicker said a 34-year-old man was arrested for possession of suspected stolen property and was to appear in the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court.
Provincial police commissioner Lieutenant-General Khombinkosi Jula said: “Intensive investigations are under way to crack this syndicate that is involved in the hijacking and theft of government vehicles. This breakthrough is very significant and more arrests cannot be ruled out.”
During the robbery, eight armed men had entered the department’s offices and held up two guards. They gained entry to an administration office and obtained the keys for the vehicles that were locked in a safe and drove off with eight state vehicles.
After the robbery, detectives had offered a R50 000 reward for information that could lead to the robbers’ arrest.