Metal theft unit doing sterling work, says mayor

The City’s metal theft unit with mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis, during their inspections in Bellville South

Mayor, Geordin Hill-Lewis joined the City’s metal theft unit on a series of inspections and searches in Bellville South last week during which a man and a woman were each fined R2500 after stolen copper cable was found at their homes.

“Fines were issued for not being registered as a second-hand goods dealer. Each fine penalty is R2500,” said Mr Hill-Lewis

The inspection locations were based on areas where stolen cable had previously been found.

“Our metal theft unit does sterling work, but the reality is we need a joint effort between SAPS crime intelligence, and state intelligence agencies. Metal theft is now organised crime, and we need our intelligence services to help bust open these criminal networks. We also need much tougher penalties for those caught stealing or destroying public infrastructure,“ said Mr Hill-Lewis.

Asked how much metal theft there had been in the Bellville area in the past few months, he said: “It’s not possible to give an overview, given the number of departments affected by theft and vandalism of infrastructure. What we can indicate is that we arrested seven suspects in the Bellville area between January and March this year for possession of prohibited items, possession of suspected stolen property and common robbery.”

Bellville and Durbanville police did not respond to questions by deadline.