Garden Route District integrated weekend crime combating operations yield success: 362 arrested

EDEN CLUSTER – Police in the Garden Route District expanded their efforts to ensure a safe environment for all during this weekend through the strategic deployment of integrated forces in the crime stricken areas in the Southern Cape.

These concerted efforts by Police in the Garden Route District and the strategic deployment of integrated forces on major and secondary routes as well as high density patrols in townships and neighbourhoods ensured that a total of 362 suspects were arrested between Thursday evening, 28 July 2022 and Sunday morning, 31 July 2021 at 06:00. Among those arrested, 99 were arrested for reported crime, committed during the mentioned period while five wanted suspects and 240 suspects were arrested within the 12 hour cycle. These arrests represent various criminal offences, ranging from petty to other serious crime, including murder and robberies.

This weekend’s operations included high visibility blue light patrols, stop and search operations with a special focus on drug and liquor outlets, illegal firearms, the tracing of wanted suspects and the confiscation of dangerous weapons. An integrated multi-disciplinary team comprising of various departments accompanied the SAPS’s District Management Operational team to Thembalethu last night where they conducted compliance inspections and paid visits to the nightlife of the township. Members conducted searches and subsequently closed down 6 illicit drug houses and successfully raided three of them.

Most of the arrested suspects will make their court appearance in the local magistrates’ court tomorrow, Monday, 01 August 2022, once they have been charged.

Various suspects were arrested for the illegal possession of drugs including Mandrax and Tik by members of the Crime Prevention Units around the Garden Route, including those of Oudtshoorn, George, Conville and Thembalethu near George.

Last night, combined forces from George, Conville and Thembalethu assisted with crime combating operations in Thembalethu and arrested two suspects in connection with an attempted murder and armed robbery that was committed in 23rd Street, Zone 7, Thembalethu. Preliminary investigation suggested that members were dispatched to an alley at the mentioned address at about 23:50 where they found two seriously injured victims as well as a third victim that made reports that they were robbed and shot at as well as assaulted by armed men whom they know.

Members operationalised the information leading to the residences of the assailants where two suspects were arrested after they have been positively identified and linked to the crime. Members also found two stolen cellphones, belonging to the victims, in their possession, positively linking them to the alleged attempted murder and robbery. (See attached photo of arrests and cellphones recovered) the two suspects in their mid-thirties is scheduled to appear in the Thembalethu Magistrates’ Court on Monday, 01 August 2022, once charged.

Three suspects between the ages of 39 and 50 are scheduled to appear in the Plettenberg Bay Magistrates’ court on Monday, 01 August 2022, following their arrest on Thursday, 28 July 2022, in connection with a business robbery that was committed at a business in Plettenberg Bay. They were arrested following an intelligence-led operation between Crime Intelligence, Knysna and Plettenberg Bay Detectives, as well as private security companies. Police managed to recover all stolen property, including jackets, Tekkies, caps and other items. They also confiscated a licenced firearm and ammunition as well as a VW Tsi Golf that was used during the initial commission of the crime.

Yesterday, Saturday, 30 July 2022, members attached to the Southern Cape Rural Flying Squad arrested a suspect who was found in possession of three Samsung Indoor Aircon Units to the value of approximately R26 000.00, belonging to a business in Knysna. He was subsequently charged with the possession of suspected stolen goods. He is due to make his first court appearance in the Knysna Magistrates’ Court on Monday, 01 August 2022.

The District Commissioner of the Garden Route, Major General Norman Modishana had nothing but praise for the vigilance and commitment of the members who were instrumental in the busts.

The Provincial Commissioner of the Western Cape, Lieutenant General Thembisile Patekile has praised the members for their dedication to safeguard communities within their area. The confiscation of illicit drugs and dangerous weapons during this weekend also contributed to the prevention of serious crime such as murder and assault with the intent to cause grievous bodily harm, he said. Their vigilance and commitment to bring these perpetrators to book, is greatly appreciated. Combined and integrated operations will continue throughout with the focus to safeguard Western Cape communities against the scourge of drug addiction and serious and violent crimes, including GBV-related offences.

Source: South African Police Service