LOOK: Hawks bust a surreptitious drug lab worth R150m in Magaliesburg

Picture: SAPS

Picture: SAPS

Published May 12, 2023


Cape Town - The Hawks arrested two suspects reportedly operating a fully functional clandestine laboratory and confiscated drugs worth R150m in the rural Mogale City, Magaliesburg.

The duo were arrested by the Hawks’ South African Narcotics Enforcement Bureau (Saneb) in partnership with Crime Intelligence (CI) and the Special Task Force on Thursday.

Police spokesperson Colonel Philani Nkwalase said that the joint police team executed a search-and-seizure warrant (J51) following an intensive investigation into the drug supply flowing into the Western Cape.

“During the search, the police found mandrax paste, mandrax tablets, mandrax press, oven to dry methaqualone, buckets of methaqualone, and drums of powder used in the manufacturing of mandrax worth an estimated R150m, and two suspects aged 72 and 37 were arrested” Nkwalase said.

Picture: SAPS

Nkwalase said that the duo will appear in the Krugersdorp Magistrate’s Court on Monday, where they will be facing charges of dealing in drugs and contravening the Drugs and Drug Trafficking Act 140 of 1992.

The national head of the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (Hawks), Lieutenant-General Godfrey Lebeya, extolled the Western Cape Serious Organised Crime investigation team, along with Crime Intelligence, for their meticulous detective work.

“The collaborative approach proves to us that it is the only way to make a meaning(ful) fight against syndicate crimes,” said Lebeya.