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One trucker arrested another escapes after being bust with illicit cigarettes

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A truck driver has been arrested and another managed to evade police when they were intercepted after attempting to smuggle illicit cigarettes into South Africa from Botswana.

Police stopped two heavy-duty trucks, fully loaded with illicit cigarettes, and subsequently arrested the driver.

Colonel Malesela Ledwaba, spokesperson for the SAPS in Limpopo, said one of the two drivers managed to escape at the Groblersbrug port of entry on Sunday.

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“This (arrested) suspect is one of the two drivers of these trucks which were found fully loaded with illicit cigarettes worth over R1,4 million on the border,” Ledwaba said.

“According to the information received, the two suspect were on the border of Groblersbrug waiting to enter into South Africa from Botswana when members on duty became suspicious and conducted a search on the two trucks. They ultimately found these cigarettes, fully-loaded in the trucks.”

Read | Zim Smuggling Truck Driver Evades Police after 250km High-Speed Chase

Ledwaba said it was not clear where the cigarettes were destined for.

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One driver was arrested, while the other evaded police at Groblersbrug port of entry, after an attempt to smuggle R1, 4 million drugs from Botswana was foiled. Photo: SAPS

“One foreign national was arrested on the spot while his countryman fled the scene on feet,” said Ledwaba.

He said the detained driver was scheduled to appear before the Phalala Magistrate’s Court today to face charges of smuggling illicit cigarettes.

Meanwhile, provincial commissioner of police in Limpopo, Lieutenant General Thembi Hadebe applauded police officers at the port of entry at Groblersbrug “for their alertness and commitment”.

On Monday, IOL reported that two suspects were set to appear before the Mokopane Magistrate’s Court in Limpopo for possession of illicit cigarettes.

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The two, aged 21 and 35, were arrested on Saturday by members of the Limpopo Flying Squad in Mokopane along Thabo Mbeki Drive.

The duo also faces a charge of resisting arrest.

At the time, Ledwaba said, officers were conducting routine patrols when they received information that illegal cigarettes were being transported from Polokwane along the R101 in a silver Mercedes-Benz.

“The vehicle fitting the description was seen in Mokopane along Thabo Mbeki Drive.

“It is alleged that the police attempted to stop the said vehicle and after it neglected to stop a vehicle pursuit resulted. It appears that in the process the driver of the Mercedes-Benz vehicle lost control and hit the wall and stopped,” Ledwaba said.

One trucker arrested another escapes after being bust with illicit cigarettes

One trucker arrested another escapes after being bust with illicit cigarettes

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