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Over 8 000 nabbed, 332 firearms recovered during police operations

By Nompilo Kunene

Police identified alcohol as one of the major contributors in the commission of crimes.


Police in KwaZulu-Natal arrested just under 9 000 people during the ongoing high-density operations dubbed ‘Operation Shanela’ as well as routine police patrols, stop and searches and strategically set-up vehicle checkpoints during the month of July 2023.

KZN police spokesperson Robert Netshiunda said 332 firearms, including 273 handguns, 25 rifles,17 shotguns and 17 homemade firearms were recovered in the process.

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Of the recovered firearms, Netshiunda said 231 of them were taken off the streets during day-to-day policing, whereas 101 guns were seized when police conducted the recently launched Operation Shanela.

Netshiunda said a total of 8 940 suspects were nabbed for a variety of criminal activities, 3 334 of them were cornered and surrounded during Operation Shanela.

He said 2 482 suspects were brought to book for contact crimes including murder, attempted murder, robbery with aggravating circumstances, carjackings, business and house robberies, as well as rape and other sexual offences.

“With kidnapping seemingly raising its ugly head, police operated and arrested 42 suspects for the crime, 251 culprits were busted for burglary at residential places.”

Alcohol has been identified as one of the major contributors in the commission of crimes, and with that in mind, well-coordinated shebeen raids were conducted and 515 people were arrested for illegal dealing in liquor.

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He said 189 people were arrested after they were found to have transgressed on the Domestic Violence Act. A total number of 1 532 suspects were nabbed for drug-related crimes.

Netshiunda said proactive policing by officers in the province led to the recovery of 17 petrol bombs, 543 knives and 24 machetes. 251 vehicles were recovered after they were either stolen or hijacked.

On the stock theft front, 26 cattle,16 goats and four sheep were recovered during the operations, said Netshiunda.