South Africa News

2 arrested with copper wire estimated at R500 000 in value

Two men, aged 29 and 44 respectively, were arrested for allegedly stealing 3.5 tons of copper wire worth an estimated R500 000.

SAPS eThekwini District spokesperson Captain Carmen Rhynes said that on Wednesday, March 20, SAPS officers of the Economic Infrastructure Task Team (EITT) received information about a truck being loaded with copper cables and travelling in the Umbilo area.

Rhynes said officers responded and stopped the truck.

“Upon questioning the driver, with his passenger, they confirmed that they were transporting a load of copper,” Rhynes said.

She said the premises where the truck was loaded with the copper was also searched by EITT officers.

Rhynes said two men were arrested and charged with tampering with essential infrastructure, possession of stolen property, and receiving stolen property.

“The exhibits that were seized were 3.5 tons of stripped copper cables, one electronic scale, and the truck transporting the copper wire. The estimated value of the copper wire is R500 000,” Rhynes said.

eThekwini District commissioner Major-General Makhosazana Victoria Kheswa commended the SAPS eThekwini Economic Infrastructure Team, working with all role-players, on the arrests made and the recovery of over 3.5 tons of stripped copper wire.

In an unrelated incident, two suspects were arrested last month after being found in possession of R2.7 million worth of copper cables at a scrapyard on Martin Drive in Queensmead, Durban.

At the time of the incident, police spokesperson Colonel Robert Netshiunda said police spotted two vehicles parked outside the scrapyard and, upon searching them, found copper cables that were positively identified to be belonging to power utility Eskom. A 37-year-old suspect was arrested after he failed to explain the origin of the cables.

Netshiunda said a search inside the scrapyard resulted in the recovery of copper cables that belonged to the Passenger Rail Agency of SA and a second suspect, aged 39, was arrested.

-Daily News

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