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2023/03/23      |  Written By:  Colonel A Myburg   |   Province:  North West

POTCHEFSTROOM: 23 March 2023 - Police in the province are making inroads to remove illegal firearms that are often used to commit serious and violent crimes.  This became evident when the police seized 28 firearms between Saturday, 18 February and Wednesday, 22 March 2023, during crime combatting operations. 

In one of the cases in Kanana near Orkney, a 38-year-old man was arrested after being found in possession of two firearms on Friday, 17 March 2023. This came after information was received about a male who was due to meet with potential buyers of illegal firearms. Consequently, a crime intelligence driven operation was executed   by three off-duty Kanana Crime Prevention members who spotted a suspicious male at Hardy Street, carrying a wrapped parcel. The man was searched and arrested after being found in possession of a hunting rifle, a shotgun as well as 109 different ammunition.  Further investigation into the matter revealed that one of the firearms is linked to burglary and theft committed at Kwa Msani, Kwa-Zulu Natal Province in 2011. The suspect appeared before Orkney Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday, 22 March 2023.

In the Bojanala Sub-District 1(Brits) a 37-year-old man was arrested for possession of an unlicensed firearm at about 20:00 on Saturday, 18 March 2023, through an intelligence driven operation. A follow-up was made regarding a man who was illegally in possession of a firearm in Thetele Section, Mothotlung outside Brits, leading to his arrest.

In another case in Phokeng on Sunday, 19 March 2023, the local K9 Unit members acting on a tip-off, arrested a 39-year-old man for pointing of firearm as well as unlawful possession of firearm. It is alleged that the suspect and the victim were dining at a friend's residence in Luka village on Friday night, 17 March 2023, when they had an argument. Allegedly, one of the men pulled out a firearm and pointed it towards the victim. However, bystanders managed to intervene and calmed the situation.  The suspect appeared before the Bafokeng Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday, 22 March 2023.

The North West Provincial Commissioner, Lieutenant General Sello Kwena commended police in the province for disarming ruthless criminals who use firearms to terrorise members of the community through commission of serious and violent crimes. He pointed out that heightened visibility and crime combatting operations will continue to ensure that those who disregard the rule of law are arrested.