Eleven alleged illegal miners were better known as zama-zamas were arrested and mining vehicles worth over R3 million were seized at a mine in Northam in Limpopo on Thursday, the Hawks said.
“The Hawks received information about illegal mining activities at a mine and conducted an investigation.
“A joint team comprising the Hawks’ Serious Organised Crime Investigation and Public Order Police members pounced on the suspects and caught them red-handed busy mining chrome at the mine,” said spokesperson Captain Matimba Maluleke.
Maluleke said two tractor-loader-backhoes (TLB) and one horse truck with two trailers worth over R3 million were seized.
“While the police were busy detaining the vehicles in Thabazimbi area, a certain man who identified himself as the owner of the TLBs allegedly approached and offered R15 000-00 gratification to the police so that his seized vehicles can be freed and he was also arrested.”
The 11 were expected to appear in the Northam Magistrate’s Court on Friday.
“The other suspect arrested for corruption will appear in the Thabazimbi Magistrate’s Court the very same day. More operations to address illegal mining activities in the province are still going to be conducted,“ Maluleke said.
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