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Community participation leads to 71 arrests

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Community participation leads to 71 arrests

by Bathandwa Mbola
21 Apr 2008
BuaNews Online
BuaNews Online

Anonymous tip-offs to the Crime Line have resulted in 30 criminal cases being registered in six provinces, 71 individuals being arrested on a variety of charges and R971765 worth of goods being seized by the police.


Over the past six weeks, the arrests occurred in Gauteng, the Western Cape, North West, KwaZulu-Natal and the Free State and a stolen motor vehicle was recovered in Polokwane, Limpopo, according to the latest figures released by the South African Police Services (SAPS).

The anti-crime campaign, where people can send information via a SMS on suspected crime while remaining anonymous, was launched in June 2007 by Primedia Limited with the support of the police.

"The community has definitely responded to our calls to report more serious and organised crimes to Crime Line," National Police Commissioner spokesperson Director Sally de Beer said when commenting on the reports.

In the past the majority of the positive cases involved possessing and dealing in drugs, but of these 30 cases only half involved narcotics and the rest were comprised of a variety of crimes, some of a serious nature.

According to Ms de Beer, one SMS tip-off has already resulted in the arrest of four people and has led to a lengthy and complex under cover operation being instituted by detectives from the Organised Crime Unit.

"Detectives have asked that no further information be revealed at this stage, but once the syndicate has been unmasked and all ring-leaders and runners arrested, we are confident that we will be able to reveal one of the most significant Crime Line successes to date," Ms de Beer said.

The total number of arrests through Crime Line currently stands at 441 and R19.8 million worth of goods have been recovered or seized by the police

"Primedia and the SAPS are proud of those conscientious members of the community who have decided to report crime and criminals," she said encouraging communities to use the line in the fight against crime.

Crime Line head, Yusuf Abramjee, said: "We are delighted that the public are slowly starting to also get to the organised crime syndicates - the so-called 'big fish'.

"We appeal to the community to continue blowing the whistle on them."

Mr Abramjee said Crime Line would be celebrating its first anniversary in June.

"We will use the occasion to announce various exciting extensions to the campaign, including the formal agreement with the South African Broadcasting Cooperation (SABC).

The SABC has already started promoting Crime Line on its radio stations throughout South Africa.

In light of this Mr Abramjee said an increase in the number of tip-offs from all corners of the country has been seen.

"This is encouraging, it also shows that when the nation stands together, we can and will win the fight against crime."

The public can SMS Crime Line on 32211 or go to www.crimeline.co.za. - BuaNews

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