Poached abalone worth R2.5 million seized in Parow

Three Cape Town men were arrested for the illegal possession of abalone worth about R2.5 million. Picture: Independent Media

Three Cape Town men were arrested for the illegal possession of abalone worth about R2.5 million. Picture: Independent Media

Published Feb 23, 2017

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Johannesburg – Three men were arrested on Wednesday, for the illegal possession of abalone worth about R2.5 million in Parow, Western Cape police said.

Sergeant Noloyiso Rwexana said the Cape Town K9 Unit and the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) observed a suspicious car with two occupants at around 9am, in a parking bay off Voortrekker road and the two men got out of the car.

The police approached the two men and noticed a blanket covering the back seat, Rwexana said.

She said when the police searched the car, plastic bags containing wet shucked abalone were found under the blanket and in the front passenger side of the car.

"Upon questioning the men it appeared to be a delivery. A while thereafter a man arrived in a Nissan Almera, apparently to collect the abalone. A preliminary investigation led the members to a warehouse in Huguenot Street, Parow, where they discovered an illegal abalone processing facility," Rwexana said.

"In one area they recovered a large steel cooking pot, gas cylinders, burners and containers. Alongside it was a drying room with filled with a substantial amount of abalone on shelves, being dried, and in a corner on the ground there was a large amount of dried abalone. In total, 12 295 units of dried abalone and 1 222 units of wet shucked abalone were seized, worth an estimated street value of R2.5 million."

Rwexana said all three the men, aged 28, 35 and 42, were arrested and both cars seized.

The men are expected to appear in the Parow Magistrate's Court on Friday, facing charges under the Living Marine Resources Act, including the illegal possession and transportation of abalone.

African News Agency

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