These are the 11 Chatsworth cops bust for cigarette bribery

By Tanya Waterworth Time of article published Jul 3, 2020

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Durban - Well-known Chatsworth detective, Rama Moodley, along with two Chatsworth detectives, Ashton Rajbansi, 29, and Alicia Louise Peters, 33, appeared in the Chatsworth Magistrate's Court on charges of corruption and theft on Friday. 

The three officers were arrested on Thursday after the SAPS Provincial Anti-Corruption Unit received information from a complainant that he had gone to Chatsworth to buy cigarettes and had been stopped by the three detectives in an unmarked vehicle. 

He alleged they stopped their vehicle and took five cases of cigarettes and R4 000 in cash. 

"When the complainant proceeded to the police station to enquire about his case, he realised the police officers had not handed in the seized items," said SAPS provincial spokesperson, Brigadier Jay Naicker. 

Immediately after the Chatsworth detectives had appeared and were handed bail of R2 000 each, a second case saw eight officers from the ex-Ethekwini Inner South Cluster Task Team appear in the dock at Chatsworth Magistrate's Court on charges of corruption and theft – also involving cigarettes and cash. 

They were Joeash Govender, 29, Pragashan Govender, 36, Brandin Naidoo, 35, Uzair Omar Saib, 30, Rodash Baijnath, 28, Winston Govender, 29, Belvenathan Koopersam, 36 and Ashlin Tekram, 32. They had also been arrested on Thursday.

According to Naicker, the complainant had stated he had been approached by the officers in his shop in Chatsworth who accused him of selling cigarettes and for bribing them with R20 000. 

When the complainant returned to his shop, he found R250 000 in cash in two boxes had disappeared, along with cigarettes. He reported the theft to Chatsworth Police Station and the officers were arrested. 

All eight were released on bail this morning, with six officers being charged R2 000 bail and two officers charged R3 000 bail.

All eleven officers are due back in court on August 21. 

And while the 11 officers were appearing in court, two more police officers were arrested in Durban by the SAPS Provincial Anti-Corruption Unit on Friday morning on charges of corruption and defeating the ends of justice. Both officers are from Durban Central.

The arrests took place after a Durban shop owner complained he had been unlawfully detained and the suspects had removed 30 cellphones and R50 000 in cash from his premises. 

Both officers are expected to appear in Durban Magistrate's Court on Monday. 

The Independent on Saturday

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