SA’s cops have got a bad rap in recent times. Think Marikana, Cato Manor “death squad”, Mido Macia and Andries Tatane. And news that came out of KZN SAPS this morning isn’t likely to help the dented image. Yeah, it’s not in the same league as the cases I mentioned above, but any instance of police acting illegally is just unacceptable.
KZN SAPS spokesman Colonel Jay Naicker said in a statement that yesterday (May 15, 2014), a Warrant Officer from the north of the province was arrested after being found with R100 000 in illegal cigarettes in his police vehicle. Yep, that’s right, illegal ciggies in a police car. Oh, and they weren’t confiscated contraband, either, if that’s what you’re thinking.
“Yesterday afternoon, 15 May 2014 members of the Empangeni Crime Intelligence Unit received information of a police vehicle which was transporting illegal cigarettes from eManguzi to Durban. They were given a detailed description of the said vehicle and began a search for the vehicle. A vehicle fitting the same description was spotted along N2 near Mtubatuba…heading towards Durban. The members called for backup from the KwaMsane Tactical Response Team and KwaMbonambi police. The said vehicle was stopped near KwaMbonambi along the N2 and it was searched. Nine boxes containing illicit cigarettes to the street value of more than R100 000 were found. The occupants of the vehicle, a Warrant Officer stationed at a specialised unit near Richards Bay and a woman could not give police an explanation on how they came into possession of the illegal cigarettes,” Naicker said.
The two are expected to appear in court on Monday.