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DURBAN - Police in the Free State have arrested more than 1 300 people in a week as part of their safer festive season operations. 

The arrests form part of operation #Zozojika Izinto - turning the tide against crime - provincial head of communications Colonel Thandi Mbambo said on Wednesday.  

The suspects are set to appear before various magistrate's courts throughout the Free State.

"Of those arrested, 305 were arrested for contact crimes and 24 for contact related crimes. One-hundred-and-thirty-eight were arrested for crimes detected as a result of police actions - this includes 68 people that were arrested for driving while under the influence of liquor, and 197 arrested for liquor related crimes," said Mbambo. 

She said 455 people were arrested for crimes such as possession of a dangerous weapon and possession of stolen items, 21 for serious crimes, 96 for other serious crimes and 66 were booked for possession of stolen property.

"49 741 grams worth of different drugs were seized; gold dust was confiscated and five stolen vehicles were confiscated; 34 firearms were also confiscated and removed from the streets."

Acting provincial commissioner, major general Solly Lesia, applauded the "hard work and dedication" of officers displayed since the beginning of the operations. 

“Due to their sacrifice and commitment we have so far arrested more than 3000 people and will continue to do so beyond the festive season” he said. 

African News Agency (ANA)