Ricochet News

Firearms seized, suspects arrested in Northern Areas during police raids

May 21, 2019
Firearms seized, suspects arrested in Northern Areas during police raids

Port Elizabeth - In an effort to clamp down on the serious and violent crimes committed with illegal firearms, Port Elizabeth police have been conducting searches at homes, in the streets and hideouts of known gang members in the Northern Areas.

"Since Friday, a total of eight firearms and ammunition were confiscated and 12 suspects arrested in separate incidents. A total of five firearms and seven people were arrested on Monday," said police spokesperson, Col Priscilla Naidu.

"On Monday, at about 04:40, SAPS Gelvandale Crime Prevention and the Tactical Response Team (Gauteng) members executed several search warrants at houses in the Helenvale area.

"While performing this task, the members received information about illegal firearms kept at a house in Blesbok Street in Helenvale."

She said that the house was searched and three firearms were found hidden under the floor in the lounge.

"The firearms were reported stolen in Kwazakele, Humewood and East London in in November 2018, February 2019 and January 1998 respectively," Col Naidu added.

"Five suspects (two males and three females), aged between 22 and 45 years old, were arrested and detained on charges of illegal possession of firearms and ammunition. The firearms will be sent to forensics for further investigation and analysis."

Suspects expected in Port Elizabeth courts soon

She said that also on Monday, at about 11:00 TRT members (Gauteng) were on foot patrol in Barberry Drive in Bethelsdorp when they immediately responded to rival gangs shooting at each other in an open space near a school.

"One suspect was arrested with a 9mm pistol in his possession."

Col Naidu said that Public Order Policing from Port Elizabeth also arrested a 27-year-old male in Blueberry Drive, not far from Barberry Drive.

"Members were also responding to the shooting and were on foot when they received information from a community member of a suspect running into a yard.

"Members reacted to the information and noticed the suspect throwing a firearm in the yard and run. He was apprehended and a.38 revolver was recovered. He is detained on a charge of illegal possession of a firearm and ammunition," Col Naidu added.

"The arrested persons are expected to appear in court soon."

Mount Road Cluster Commander, Maj Gen Thembisile Patekile, has called on the communities in these areas to work with police in arresting those involved in the recent shooting incidents that took place over the weekend in the Bethelsdorp precinct.

"We have intensified our policing in Bethesldorp and we will be engaging in hard core policing until we are satisfied that the area has stabilised and the communities are safe. We will not allow these criminals to be a law unto themselves and undermine the authority of the State. Communities also need to take a stance and work with us to ensure their safety. We need to confiscate these illegal firearms that are used in the commission of serious crimes," added Maj Gen Patekile.

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