Laptop lands men behind bars

Western Cape detectives arrested four suspected abalone smugglers, including a police constable from Kuils River, as they tried to do a deal in a Welgemoed parking lot last week. Police said the alleged smugglers had been trying to deliver abalone to a Chinese national on Thursday February 2, at 11.20am. The detectives found bags of abalone in the policemans private vehicle and later, when they searched his garage, they seized more abalone for a total catch of 2 428 units of the widely poached mollusc, with an estimated street value of R350 000.

A stolen laptop gave a Bellville policeman all the evidence he needed to arrest the two men who were found with it.

Constable Nolan Ruiters was on patrol in Bellville CBD crime hot spots on Friday February 2, when he spotted two men in Conradie Street, opposite crime-plagued Parksig Villas, at about 9.30am.

One of the men was carrying a laptop bag and neither could give a reasonable explanation as to how they had come by it, said police spokeswoman Major Fienie Nimb.

“The constable switched the laptop on and found a phone number on one of the documents,” she said.

When Constable Ruiters called the number, he learnt that the laptop owner’s vehicle had been broken into the night before in Kraaifontein.

The two men, both from Scottsdene and aged 21 and 25, were arrested for being in possession of stolen property.