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Springbok - A 37-year-old man is due to appear in the Springbok Magistrate's Court on Monday after he was caught in a sting operation trying to sell fake diamonds, the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (Hawks) in the Northern Cape said.

The man allegedly wanted to sell the diamonds for R40 000, Hawks spokesperson Nomthandazo Mnisi said on Sunday.

"The Hawks were tipped off [on Friday] and they immediately enticed the suspect to a meeting where a deal was struck. The suspect was arrested on the spot after he produced the diamonds. [After] a check of the items, they were found to be fake," Mnisi said. 

Northern Cape Hawks head Maj-Gen Kholekile Galawe cautioned and appealed to the public to desist from illegal diamond trading "because it is a crime punishable by law".

“Irrespective [of] whether you are a seller or a buyer, no individual is authorised to trade in diamonds outside the confines of the law. The public must not create markets for criminal minded people to continue with scams and steal,” he said.

African News Agency (ANA)