Hawks take down group of drug dealers

Hawks take down group of drug dealers

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GK CRONJE

3 August 2021

The nine foreign nationals and one local were arrested by the Hawks Serious Organised Crime Investigation team Mpumalanga, assisted by Forensic Science Laboratory, Crime Intelligence, Tactical Response Team, Public Order Policing and SAPS Bethal.

“Don” Chibuzo Chicozie Ogbunkwu (35) , Okereke Valentine Okwudiri (35), Kadima Remy (29), Male Mkolo (33), Mukembani Justin Kasindo (34), RudeA ngeKishuke (24), Bongiwe Manengela (41), Enewere David (34), Mwambaza Hamisa (31) and David Chicoloko (26) were remanded in custody by the Bethal Magistrate Court on Friday, 30 July 2021. The nine foreign nationals and one local were arrested by the Hawks Serious Organised Crime Investigation team Mpumalanga, assisted by Forensic Science Laboratory, Crime Intelligence, Tactical Response Team, Public Order Policing and SAPS Bethal during a crackdown emanated from a major investigation by the Hawks and Crime Intelligence since June 2020 addressing drug challenges in Bethal. It is alleged that in June 2020, information was received by the team about the criminal group dealing in drugs around Secunda and Bethal.

Intelligence driven information gathering was conducted and presented before the court, resulting in the arrest of the suspects . During the arrest, cash and drugs were confiscated for further investigation. One of the accused David Chicoloko (26), who was not part of the said investigation, (ADHOC), was arrested for illegal immigration. He was found guilty and sentenced to a R1500 fine or three months imprisonment, and was further ordered to be deported to his country of origin on 9 July 2021. The case has been postponed to 6 August 2021 due to unavailability of the interpreter and legal aid. All the accused remain in custody.