Farmers and SAP stop copper cable thieves

Hennie Pauw
THABAZIMBI – Five suspects, involved in the theft and transportation of copper cable, were caught last week Tuesday in a joint operation between farmers and the police.
Late afternoon on Tuesday 21 April a truck was noticed with stolen copper cable on the Makoppa road close to the Dwaalboom tar road. Police Sector Commander for Makoppa, Machiel Reinecke, had contacted the police and mobilized farmers in blocking the roads to stop the suspects from escaping.
By now the suspects knew they were in trouble and had abandoned the vehicle and fled into the bushes. All three adjoining roads, the Makoppa gravel road, the Dwaalboom tar road and the Rooibokkraal gravel road, were patrolled by farmers.
The bushes were swept and with the help of Lourens du Plessis’s helicopter searching the area, all five suspects were caught. One was hauled out of a warthog hole.
According to the police the truck with the copper cable has been traced to the owner of a scrap yard in the industrial area in Thabazimbi. The police are still investigating whether any links exist between the business and the stolen copper cable.
Of the five suspects, two are South Africans currently living in Regorogile, one is a Zimbabwean national and two are Mozambicans. All of them are still in custody.
According to police spokesman, Capt Thapela, the co-operation of all the role-players help apprehend the culprits, from the farmers and their work force, to the police who were present in large numbers, the availability of the helicopter to the acute observation of the shop owner who noticed the suspect vehicle. Within four hours, between 16:00 and 20:00, the swift reaction of everybody involved lead to the arrest of the suspects, he said.