New crime-busting Operation Shanela makes progress 

National commissioner of police, General Fannie Masemola, on Friday provided feedback on Operation Shanela, the weekly high-density operations taking place throughout the country which commenced on May 8.

In his opening address, Masemola said the continued analysis of crime patterns and emerging crime threats has led to the initiation of the high-density operation.

He said: “We will continue to implement our five-pillar approach in our resolve to reduce the volumes of crime in our communities.” 

Masemola said that Operation Shanela comprised of regular stop-and-searches, vehicle check-up points, roadblocks, cordon and searches, high visibility patrols including foot patrols, tracing of wanted suspects with a focus on the apprehension of murder and rape suspects and, lastly, compliance inspections at liquor outlets as well as second-hand goods dealers.

“[We] will see all provincial commissioners and senior management from each province, leading and taking part in weekly high-density crime prevention and combatting operations.”

Masemola said police are starting to see the positive impact of these integrated, high-density operations that are intensified over the weekend when crime is most prevalent and reported.

Since the inception of the operation, police have caught a total of 21 200 suspects for various crimes.

An additional 215 151 firearms and more than 2-million rounds of ammunition have been destroyed from 2019 to date.

“In this financial year, we plan to destroy a further 12 592 firearms that were also confiscated during operations,” Masemola said.

About 17 481 suspects were arrested during the financial year for gender-based-violence and femicide and 386 life imprisonment sentences were handed down to 230 accused people during the same period. 

“The lockdown operation in the Western Cape is still running, with the focus on the six priority police stations. Our specialised units continue to maintain a presence to deter crime from happening.”

In the Western Cape, 278 suspects have been arrested for various crimes, 112 stolen and hijacked vehicles have been recovered, with 124 cases currently sitting before the court.

“Gang-related crimes are being combated in Gauteng. In Westbury, guns have been silenced, and this can be attributed to increased police visibility, crime intelligence targeted operations, as well as the deployment of members as per the crime analysis patterns.”

In Gauteng, 127 suspects have been arrested, 89 cases are sitting before the court, 67 of these arrests are linked to gangs in Westbury, and 20 stolen vehicles have been recovered.

“The task team deployed to clamp down on cross-border crime in northern KwaZulu-Natal is registering commendable progress.”

In KwaZulu-Natal, 75 suspects have been arrested, 37 vehicles have been recovered, 27 firearms have been recovered and 321 rounds of ammunition seized.

Masemola highlighted the importance of partnership policing between the SA Police Service and community policing structures in the fight against crime.


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