BURGERSFORT – The three suspects, Tshegofatso Makwana (25), Chegofatso Komane (29) and Sipho Pilusa (43), who are facing charges of illegal mining, appeared before the Praktiseer Magistrates Court on Thursday, 30 July 2020 and were all denied bail. Their cases were postponed to 05 August 2020 for further police investigations.
Colonel Moatshe Ngoepe, Limpopo Provincial Police Spokesperson, said the three were arrested on Tuesday, 28 July 2020, during an intelligence driven operation which was jointly conducted with members of the South African Police Service (Saps) provincial organized crime unit, the operations command centre, the task team and public order police.
Ngoepe said the police operationalised information received about the latest illegal mining activity underway in that area and arrested the suspects at Balotjaneng Village.
“Two excavators, a truck and stockpile of unprocessed chrome were seized. The total value of the items that were seized is estimated at about R6 million,” informed Ngoepe.
Ngoepe added thus far, a total of 25 suspects had been arrested on illegal mining related charges since March 2020 and a number of trucks, excavators, other mining machinery and equipment as well as unprocessed chrome worth million of rands had been confiscated.
“The other arrests were effected during the ongoing intelligence joint operations conducted in Burgersfort and Lebowakgomo, including some areas that stretch along the R37 road, covering Apel, Malipsdrift, Mecklenburg, Driekop and Tubatse.
Lieutenant General Nneke Ledwaba, Limpopo Provincial Police Commissioner, commended the members for well coordinated operations that always led to arrests and confiscations.
Ledwaba further praised community members for continuously providing positive information to help fight illegal activities in the province.