Home News Coastal area operation nets successes – SAPS

Coastal area operation nets successes – SAPS

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In a concerted effort by the police to combat illegal activities along the coastal region, “Operation Phakisa” was launched over the Easter weekend in the Namakwa District of the Northern Cape and netted a number of successes.

In a bid to curb illegal activities and ensure strict compliance with marine-related regulations, a multi-disciplinary operation, dubbed “Operation Phakisa”, was successfully executed in the coastal areas of the Namakwa District. Pictures: SAPS

IN A CONCERTED effort by the police to combat illegal activities along the coastal region, “Operation Phakisa” was launched over the Easter weekend in the Namakwa District of the Northern Cape.

The multi-disciplinary operation, spanning from March 28 to April 2, targeted key locations including Port Nolloth, Kleinzee, Brazil, Groenrivier, Alexander Bay and Hondeklipbaai.

Provincial police spokesperson Sergeant Timothy Sam said the operation honed in on marine-related crimes and emphasised strict adherence to prescribed regulations governing ranching, fishing and harvesting. Simultaneously, it tackled the menace of drug proliferation and sought to curb the flow of undocumented immigrants.

Under the overall command of Lieutenant-Colonel Wessie van der Westhuizen, the Vioolsdrift Border Policing commander, the operation received crucial support from Lieutenant-Colonel Adrian Riddles, the Provincial Border Policing commander, and Thulani Mthombeni from the Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment (DFFE). The operation’s Tactical commander, Captain James Pieters, actively participated in the planning and execution.

Various government departments and entities collaborated seamlessly during the operation. The SA Revenue Service (Sars) Customs unit, SANParks, the Department of Mineral Resources and the provincial Department of Agriculture, Environmental Affairs, Rural Development and Land Reform worked in tandem to execute actions to disrupt criminal activities.

These actions included compliance inspections, vehicle checkpoints (VCPs), stop and searches, foot and vehicle patrols and raids at identified houses for illegal drugs and other commodities smuggling.

During the operation, four vehicle checkpoints were conducted on the Port Nolloth-Alexander Bay and the Port Nolloth-Kleinzee roads, resulting in 93 vehicles and 217 persons being stopped and searched.

Sam said the operation yielded numerous successes, including the inspection of 227 fishing permits at harbours, camping sites and launching pads visited by the multi-disciplinary law enforcement officials, resulting in fines totalling R3,500 being issued for contraventions of the Marine Living Resources Act.

In addition, the team seized liquor, mandrax and a VW Polo vehicle used in the commission of a crime, all valued at R315,470.85. Numerous fines were also issued for contravention of the Liquor Act.

Six suspects were also arrested for contravening the Marine Living Resources Act and the Immigration Act, dealing and possession of drugs, and riotous behaviour. They were warned to appear in court with an option of a fine.

The acting provincial commissioner of the SAPS in the Northern Cape, Major-General Luntu Ngubelanga, stated that the police, in co-operation with the DFFE and other stakeholders, are committed and determined to protect the sea environment and marine resources, to the benefit of the residents of the Province.

He affirmed that the police will continue to “fiercely combat” illegal and unregulated activities along the coastal areas.

In a bid to curb illegal activities and ensure strict compliance with marine-related regulations, a multi-disciplinary operation, dubbed “Operation Phakisa”, was successfully executed in the coastal areas of the Namakwa District. Pictures: SAPS

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