Three Chinese nationals nabbed for illegal abalone facility

SEPTEMBER 15, 2014

Three Chinese nationals arrested during a raid at an illegal abalone processing facility in Van Dyk Park, Boksburg, will appear before the Vosloorus Magistrate’s Court this morning.

The facility was raided on Sunday following a tip-off from a member of the community to the Metro Police.

During the joint operation, which involved officials of the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries and the South African Police Services, 10 508 units of dry abalone (with a total weight of 860kg) and almost a ton of wet abalone was confiscated, as well as drying equipment worth R50 000.

The three are facing charges of being in possession of abalone without a permit as well as operating a fish processing plant without a permit.

This is the second major raid in the area after more than 50 000 units of abalone were confiscated in a bust at another drying facility in Rynfield, Benoni, in July this year.

During the July operation, one Chinese national, two Mozambicans and a Malawian citizen were arrested.

They are still in custody and will appear in court again on September 22 for a bail application. However, the Department does not suspect any link between the two incidents. - SAnews.gov.za