In pursuance of prescripts of the national drug master plan, KwaZulu-Natal police has adopted a multidisciplinary approach in fighting the scourge of drug abuse. Due to the Provincial Commissioner’s personal intervention and her leadership, various drug teams were formed to supplement the Province’s war on drugs.
Our approach involves the use of Crime Intelligence, Detectives and the Hawks and involves focused investigations as well as liaison with foreign law enforcement agencies to address drug trafficking and drug dealers.
Police officers from our Visible Policing environment are dealing with deterrence through proactive and reactive policing and Social Crime Prevention measures. We are also focusing on drugs that enter through our Ports of Entry. Our success can also be attributed to the involvement of other policing agencies and Government Departments who we work very closely with. We still find that the drug of choice is cannabis which accounts for over 75% of the drugs that is seized. This is because it is cheap and grows in abundance along our coastline. We have many project driven operations involving undercover operations, surveillance, interceptions and monitoring. We also hold regular disruptive operations at our Ports of Entry, night clubs and known drug outlets.
During the ten month period between April 2013 and January 2014 we have arrested 39 316 persons for drug related offences in the KwaZulu Natal Province. During this period we also seized 25 795kg of dagga as well as 28 944 dagga plants. We also seized 1 018 291 straws of heroin and 162 567 mandrax tablets. We also had major drug busts during this period which include:
– On 13 May 2013 a women was arrested when one kilogram of cocaine and 400 grams of heroin valued at R800 000 was found in a false compartment in her bag at King Shaka International.
– On 5 July 2013 a man and women were arrested after 50,37kg of heroin and 16 235 ecstasy tablets valued at R37 million was seized at a clandestine narcotics laboratory in Illovo.
– On 22 October 2013 a man and women were arrested when 36kg of Chrystal Meth valued at R6.3 million was found in their luggage when they arrived at King Shaka International.
– On 4 November 2013 a man was arrested when 2kg of cocaine valued at R700 000 was found in a false compartment in his luggage.
– On 30 November 2013 19 men were arrested at Hillcrest after 40kg of heroin powder, one million straws of heroin and 79 000 mandrax tablets valued at R40 million was seized.
– On 30 December 2013 12 suspects were arrested in Umhlanga after 4kg of heroin, 25 000 mandrax tablets and 5000 straws of heroin valued at R4 million was seized.
– On 23 January 2014 a man and women were arrested after cocaine valued at R282 000 was found hidden inside a women shoes at King Shaka International.
– On 9 February 2014 a women was arrested at King Shaka International after 1,16kg of cocaine valued at R450 000 was found strapped to her body.
– On 10 February 2014 a man was arrested at King Shaka International after 1,5kg of cocaine valued at R750 000 was found strapped to his body.
– On 14 February 2014 a women was arrested at Emanguzi after 1723, 67kg of dagga valued at R1, 72 million was found on her homestead.
The KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Commissioner Lieutenant General Mmamonnye Ngobeni expressed her confidence that police are indeed making huge inroads into drug dealing and drug smuggling in the province. “Our police officers have been very successful at intercepting drug dealers and drug smugglers thus preventing large quantities of drugs from ending up on our streets. We should also not underestimate the role that visible policing plays in raiding known drug dens on a daily basis,” she said.
“These successes would not been achieved had we not committed ourselves to vigorously deal with the drug scourge. Whilst police are winning the war by intercepting these drug shipments and arresting drug dealers and drug smugglers, we appeal to the community to play a proactive role by ensuring that our youth do not support these drug dealers,” she added.