POLICE arrested five people in the Western Cape, after they were found to be in possession of undocumented flora. Picture: SAPS
POLICE arrested five people in the Western Cape, after they were found to be in possession of undocumented flora. Picture: SAPS

Five arrested for possession of undocumented flora

By Robin-Lee Francke Time of article published Oct 21, 2021

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Cape Town – Five people have been arrested in the Western Cape, after police found them in possession of flora they could not account for.

The Western Cape provincial police spokesperson Sergeant Luqmaan Adams said the arrests form part of an integrated effort between members of the police, Malmesbury STES Unit, and Cape Nature Conservation.

He said the suspects are aged between 25 and 34.

“The suspects were arrested after they were stopped and searched on the N7, near Vanrhynsdorp.

“Three bags, with a total of 5 697 succulents, conophytum plants, and two bags containing herbs, were found in the vehicle,” Adams said.

He said that suspects could not provide any documentation for the flora.

Once charged, the suspects are expected to appear in the Malmesbury Magistrate’s Court.

In an unrelated incident in the North West, the Hawks made a major bust during an illegal mining operation in Orkney, in the North West.

According to spokesperson for the Hawks Colonel Katlego Mogale, 87 suspects, between the ages of 25 and 49, were arrested on Wednesday evening.

She said six suspects were killed, while eight others were wounded, during a shootout with members of the Special Task Force, who were assisted by the Hawks’ Organised Crime Investigation team, during the intelligence driven operation.

Mogale said it is reported that while acting on the information received, the multi-disciplinary team, which comprised of the Hawks, Task Force, National Intervention Unit, District Crime Combating Unit, NW Airwing, Explosives Unit, Bidvest Protea Coin Security, and Local Criminal Record Centre, pounced on the identified mining shaft, where they were met with gunfire from the suspects.

“The team seized two minibuses, Illegal mining paraphernalia, gold bearing material, 11 illegal firearms (three shotguns, three rifles, four pistols, and a revolver), and bags of food.

“The suspects are facing charges of attempted murder, illegal possession of gold, illegal possession of firearms and ammunition, illegal possession of prohibited firearms, theft and conspiracy to commit an offence,” Mogale said.

The group is expected to appear in the Orkney Magistrate’s Court on Monday, October 25, 2021.

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