CAPE TOWN: A meticulously planned sting operation by the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (Hawks), US’ Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and Crime Intelligence (CI), led to the arrest of four suspects in Gauteng and the North West provinces, on Thursday morning.
The group is believed to have been involved in a transnational drug enterprise in the USA, Mozambique, and South Africa.
According to Hawks spokesperson Brigadier Nomthandazo Mbambo, the sting operation was aimed at disrupting the “lethal global narcotics trade” and took place in the Modderfontein and Buffelshoek policing precincts, respectively.
The arrested suspects are foreign nationals, aged between 38 and 54.
“They have been on the radar of the authorities for a while. They have since been charged for dealing in narcotics, in terms of the Drug Trafficking Act 140/1992.
“About 60kg of crystal meth, with a street value of about R7 million, was recovered from the syndicate. Analysis between the local Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) and their US counterparts is under way, following which an extradition arrangement to the USA may be explored,” Mbambo said.
The group is expected to appear in the Potchefstroom Magistrate’s Court on Monday, January 3, 2022.
Acting national head of the Hawks Lieutenant General Tebello Mosikili lauded the achievement of the multidisciplinary approach.
“As provided by the SAPS Act, as amended Section 17(e), a multidisciplinary approach and integrated methodology by committed local and international stakeholders resulted in this progressive achievement.
“More so, following the recently conducted Transnational Organised Crime Conference, where implacable tactics to fight and win the war against transnational organised crime and drug trafficking were discussed.
“Through such concerted efforts, we shall continue the onslaught against drug trafficking organisations,” Mosikili concluded.