Police arrest more than 50,000 in three weeks


More than 50,000 people were arrested between 17 December and 7 January as part of the police’s Operation Shanela.

According to Brig. Athlenda Mathe, police spokesperson, during the past festive period, the police held patrols at identified hotspot areas to try to minimize incidents of crime.

More than 3,330 roadblocks were held with the focus on locating wanted suspects, seizing illegal firearms, drugs and illegal goods, as well as recovering stolen and hijacked vehicles.

Between December 17 and January 7, 267 illegal firearms were seized and 197 stolen and hijacked vehicles were recovered.

A total of 1,390 suspects were arrested on charges of attempted murder, 1,252 for rape, more than 10,000 on charges of assault and 546 for illegal possession of firearms and ammunition.

“Since Operation Shanela started in May last year, more than 314,000 people have already been arrested.”

General Fannie Masemola, national police commissioner, said the police remain on high alert to catch criminals and fight crime.

“Our focus remains on serious and violent crime. Our police officers are still deployed to ensure that we increase visibility.”