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Prison warden’s house raided, police seize money and drugs

Cash in a plastic bag

A 37-year-old prison warden based in Mpumalanga was released on R3 000 bail after she was arrested for dealing in drugs. Photo: Supplied

Published Nov 12, 2021

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Pretoria – A 37-year-old prison female prison warder has appeared in the Witbank Magistrate’s Court for allegedly dealing in drugs.

Prison warder, Tinyiko Claudia Mathebula, based at Paxton correctional services in Witbank was arrested at around 3am on Thursday.

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Hawks provincial spokesperson in Mpumalanga Captain Dineo Lucy Sekgotodi said the court released Mathebula on R3 000 bail, and postponed the case to 27 January for further investigation.

“Mathebula was nabbed by members of the Hawks serious organised crime investigation team in Mpumalanga together with Dog Unit (K9) Middelburg and Crime Intelligence Witbank for contravention of the Drug and Drugs Trafficking Act” said Sekgotodi.

“The joint police team swiftly acted on information received about the prison warden who was allegedly dealing in drugs.”

A search warrant was obtained and executed at Mathebula’s house.

“An assortment of drugs that include 2 474.4 grams of Crystal meth, 79.8 grams of cocaine, 1.6 grams of cocaine rock, 15.4 grams of heroin worth an all-inclusive value of R870 000.00 as well as cash notes totaling R70 000,00 were found and seized for further investigation,” said Sekgotodi.

Mpumalanga provincial head of the Hawks, Major General Zodwa Mokoena applauded the “virtuous working relationship” between the police units within the South African Police Service which yielded the “massive success”.

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Mokoena additionally warned corrupt government employees, saying “your days are numbered in the service; we will investigate without fear, favour nor prejudice”.

Last week, the SAPS in Mpumalanga has arrested a 34-year-old man for possession of dagga, estimated at about R330 000.

“An intelligence-driven operation by members of the South African Police Service in Standerton yielded positive results whereby a male suspect, aged 34, was arrested with dagga estimated at about R330 000. The man was arrested in Standerton,” Mpumalanga SAPS spokesperson Brigadier Selvy Mohlala said at the time.

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“Reports indicate that members were notified about a certain vehicle that was transporting dagga from KwaZulu-Natal province to Gauteng province.”

Mohlala said the information was then operationalised, and officers spotted the vehicle, a white Toyota Fortuner with Gauteng registration number plates, which matched the description provided.

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