Home News 37 suspected illegal miners arrested in NC

37 suspected illegal miners arrested in NC

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Multidisciplinary operation targets illegal mining in the Namakwa District.

Pictures: Supplied

THIRTY-seven suspects were arrested on charges of illegal mining in Oubeep and Nuttabooi during a multidisciplinary, crime intelligence driven operation that was conducted on July 6 to 7 in the Namakwa District.

Northern Cape police spokesperson Colonel Mashay Gamieldien said on Thursday that a team, which included Crime Intelligence, the Directorate for Priority Crimes Investigation, the Provincial Operations Command Centre, Operational Response Services, Provincial Vispol, Springbok K9, Upington and Kuruman Highway patrol, Springbok and Upington POPS and the Department of Home Affairs, conducted raids in the Oubeep, Tweepad mine, Nuttabooi mining areas as well as in Port Nolloth and Kleinzee.

“During these actions, 35 men and two women were arrested in the mining areas of Oubeep and Nuttabooi. They were charged for illegal mining. Five vehicles were also impounded as they were allegedly utilised in the commission of a crime,” said Gamieldien.

She added that 28 suspects were warned to appear before the Port Nolloth Periodic Court on August 3.

“Nine undocumented persons – eight males and one female – appeared before the Springbok Magistrate’s Court, where the case was postponed until July 12 for a formal bail application.”

Gamieldien added that the team arrested and detained five men in Springbok after conducting raids at the Bontekoe hostel on July 7.

“Numerous digging equipment and implements, including generators, shovels, hammers,

jigs and power tools, as well as numerous bags of diamond bearing gravel, were seized.”

The acting provincial commissioner of the Northern Cape, Major-General Joey Kers, commended the task team and believed that these actions sent a strong message to illegal miners who disregarded the law.