Suspect with illegal firearm and ammunition expected in court

A tip-off about drug dealing led to the arrest of a 22-year-old man carrying an illegal firearm and ammunition. | SAPS

A tip-off about drug dealing led to the arrest of a 22-year-old man carrying an illegal firearm and ammunition. | SAPS

Published Feb 19, 2024


Durban — A suspect is expected to appear in court on Monday (today) following his arrest for possession of an illegal firearm and ammunition.

eThekwini District SAPS spokesperson Captain Carmen Rhynes said that at approximately 2.15pm on Saturday, February 17, members of Umkomaas Crime Prevention Unit received information on drug dealing at Calendula Avenue, Roseneath.

“They followed up on the tip-off and a man, 22, was searched and found with a firearm and ammunition. The man was arrested immediately for possession of an illegal firearm and ammunition,” Rhynes said.

“The suspect was detained at SAPS Umkomaas and will be appearing in court on Monday, February 19, 2024.”

Reacting to the arrest, eThekwini District Commissioner Major General Makhosazana Victoria Kheswa said: “Removing illegal firearms and ammunition from our streets is literally saving lives. When the community works together with the SAPS and comes forward with valuable information, it always results in a community policing success.

“I am pleased with the recovery and arrest and commend Umkomaas SAPS Crime Prevention Unit's quick response to the information."

A tip-off about drug dealing led to the arrest of a 22-year-old man carrying an illegal firearm and ammunition. | SAPS

Meanwhile, when Police Minister Bheki Cele released the quarterly crime statistics for the financial year 2023/24 (October 2023-December 2023), he said that during the festive period, “2 581 suspects were arrested for being in possession of illegal and prohibited firearms and ammunition”.

He said that during cash-in-transit heists, high-calibre firearms, including rifles and AK47s, as well as high-performance vehicles that were used in the commission of these crimes were seized.

“Crimes detected as a result of police action such as the illegal possession of firearms and ammunition, drug-related crime, as well as driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs as well as sexual offences and other crimes all registered an increase of 10.8 %,” Cele said about crimes detected as a result of police action.

In a recent construction mafia incident, Cele said that 12 suspects were arrested during a takedown operation in Toekomsrus in Randfontein.

A group calling themselves Toekomsrus Business Forum attempted to disrupt a R320 million housing project, demanding a 30% stake in the project. The police’s swift response led to the arrest of these 12 suspects with two firearms confiscated.

He also said that through illicit mining operations currently under way in seven illegal mining hotspot provinces such as Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Gauteng, the Northern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, the Free State and North West, they have unleashed Operation Vala Umgodi where they are working closely with the SANDF and the Department of Minerals Resources and Energy (DMRE) in apprehending those behind these illegal activities and confiscating illegal mining equipment.

Cele said that 1 258 illegal miners have been arrested during this period.

“Through these operations, we were able to seize 94 illegal firearms, including 25 rifles and 69 handguns, with 103 stolen and hijacked vehicles also recovered,” Cele said.

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