Cape Town – Western Cape MEC of community safety, Albert Fritz has welcomed the success of members of the Law Enforcement Advancement Plan (LEAP) and the Western Cape Liquor Authority over the past week.
Both the enforcement agencies are driven by the Western Cape Government.
In Bonteheuwel on Thursday morning, LEAP officers arrested a suspect after they noticed his suspicious activity while patrolling along Loganberry Street.
When the suspect noticed the officers, he threw something into one of the yards in the street. The item was retrieved and it was found to be a firearm.
In an unrelated incident, officers also received a tip-off from an off-duty member from the South African Police Service (SAPS) about a suspect playing with a firearm in a train carriage.
The suspect was arrested at the Kraaifontein train station after he could not account for the firearm found in his possession.
Over the last week, LEAP officers conducted 7 216 person-searches, a total of 329 houses were searched, 979 vehicles were searched and 252 site inspections were conducted at on-site consumption liquor outlets.
LEAP officers also conducted 131 joint operations with the SAPS.
A total of 95 suspects were arrested, dangerous weapons removed and drugs which included 114 full mandrax tablets, 106 packets of dagga packets and 284 packets of crystal meth.
“Visible policing is the name of the game. I am very happy that the presence of our officers is being felt by criminals.
“Visible policing is very much about perception: the story that so-and-so was arrested for being in possession of an illegal firearm will spread in the community, and then would-be criminals will think twice about possessing illegal firearms going forward.
“And this is happening all the time, so the perception of police presence is being established and reinforced all the time.
“And, of course, our citizens feel safer when there is a law enforcement presence around. So it is really positive news,” Fritz said.
The Western Cape Liquor Authority also conducted enforcement operations over the past week. A total of 209 inspections were conducted of which 63 inspections were focused on underage drinking.
Officials issued 23 compliance notices with 18 non-compliance cases submitted for prosecution and eight licence holders prosecuted for possible contraventions of the Act and/or license conditions.
Officials also conducted nine operations with other enforcement agencies such as SAPS and LEAP.
Fritz said this is a matter of reinforcing the perception that if you break the law, there will be consequences. He said enforcement agencies will continue pushing this.
“We will continue pushing this, as we are doing it really well. At the same time, we must draw attention again to the call to give the Province more policing responsibility. We can assist the SAPS in a far greater manner in the fight against crime. Why stop us?” he questioned.