NELSPRUIT – Three vehicles worth more than R1 million were recovered with one suspect arrested for possession of suspected stolen motor vehicle at Lebombo Port of Entry on Friday, 27 January 2023.

According to the information, a Ford Ranger valued at about R800 000-00 was intercepted at the vehicle control check point on the said day at about 14:00. A 49-year-old Tanzanian national who alleged that he stays in Mozambique was stopped whilst enroute to Mozambique from South Africa. The vehicle looked suspicious hence police instituted further investigation. During the preliminary investigation, it transpired that the vehicle is owned by the bank and was purchased less than a month ago. The probe further revealed that not even a single instalment was paid for the vehicle. The driver possessed documents indicating that he is the lawful owner of the vehicle and claimed that he bought the vehicle from someone in Gauteng. The driver was arrested and further investigation on the originality of his documents which is believed to have been acquired fraudulently will be conducted. The man identified as Mohamed Rutenga appeared at the Komatipoort Magistrate’s Court today, Monday 30 January 2023 where he was granted bail of R1000-00. The case was postponed to 03 March 2023 for trial.

In a separate incident on the same day at about 21:30, a Toyota GD6 double cab valued at about R750 000-00 with tempered engine and vehicle identification numbers was also intercepted whilst going to Mozambique from South Africa. The vehicle was confiscated and an enquiry has been opened with regard to the ownership of the vehicle. The investigation continues.

On Saturday, 28 January 2023 at about 13:00, an Isuzu tow truck believed to have been tempered with was intercepted on its way to Mozambique. The driver somehow evaded arrest but the vehicle was confiscated for investigation purposes. No one has been arrested in this instance however police are in pursuit of the suspect. The total estimated value of the confiscated vehicles over the weekend is at about R1 800 000.

The Provincial Commissioner of the SAPS in Mpumalanga, Lieutenant General Semakaleng Daphney Manamela commended all members involved in the recoveries and the arrest of the suspect. “The members have done a great job, thereby saving a fortune by the recovery of the vehicles and I am proud that our police and other law enforcers have an interest of the inhabitants of the Republic at heart” said the General.

Source: South African Police Service

News Reporter