Port Elizabeth - In three separate incidents this week Western Cape police confiscated abalone worth about R2 million and arrested two suspects on charges of illegal possession of abalone.
Police spokesperson, Captain FC Van Wyk, said on Thursday members received a tip-off and searched premises in De Grendel Villas, De Grendel in Parow North.
Police found three boxes containing 598 units of dried abalone in the back of a white BMW X5. Inside the property, 6 439 units of wet abalone weighing about 500kg were recovered.
"The estimated street value of the abalone confiscated is R900 000. A 30-year-old suspect was arrested for possession of abalone," said Van Wyk.
The suspect is due to appear in the Bellville Magistrate’ s Court on Friday.
In another incident on Wednesday, Cape Town Marine Law Enforcement received a complaint of persons diving for abalone at Melkbosstrand.
Van Wyk said surveillance was set up and at 02:00 a white Nissan Almera motor vehicle appeared, six plastic bags seemingly containing abalone were picked up. Police members attempted to stop the vehicle but the driver sped off.
"Police members gave chase and the driver drove in a northerly on the N7, in the direction of Malmesbury. The driver diverted onto the road leading to Chatsworth," said the police captain.
"In Chatsworth, the police members lost sight of the vehicle. They regrouped and after an intensive search they found the vehicle, which had been abandoned with its loot." Six plastic bags containing abalone were recovered.
"No arrests have been made yet, but the investigation is ongoing. The vehicle has also been seized. The estimated street value of the abalone is R650,000," he said.
In a separate incident on Tuesday, police on night shift noticed a vehicle speeding along Sarel Cilliers Road in Napier. A chase ensued. The suspect lost control of his vehicle and crashed into a wall. The injured suspect was arrested and taken to a nearby hospital.
Police retrieved 1 313 units of abalone worth around R400 000.
The arrested man faces charges of reckless and negligent driving as well as the unlawful possession of abalone.