Over 130 police, security and public officials arrested during lockdown
At least 131 police officers, security members and government officials — specifically councillors — have been arrested for Covid-19-related lockdown crimes over the past month.
Police minister Bheki Cele said 89 police officers formed part of the overall figure.
“One of the challenges we have faced during the lockdown has been dealing with pockets of criminality and having to arrest members of the security forces, government officials and some public office bearers, specifically councillors.”
Cele was briefing the media during a visit to Durban on Wednesday to assess adherence of the Covid-19 lockdown regulations in the province.
He said councillors, health officials and department of correctional service members were among the government officials arrested.
Four men were arrested after footage was captured of an alleged thief as he climbed up a 15m pole and attempted to steal precious metal from the destroyed Central Line in Cape Town on April 15 2020.
The police minister said among the 89 officers arrested were two sergeants from Katlehong in Gauteng who were arrested after allegedly demanding a R12,000 bribe from a businessman who had contravened the lockdown regulations on Monday.
Cele said the members promised the businessman that they would destroy the docket if he paid them.
He said members arrested faced a variety of charges relating to the prohibition of the selling of liquor during the lockdown.
“Some were caught drinking; some for buying and selling liquor; some for corruption and defeating the ends of justice; some for organising gatherings in contravention of the regulations; some even going as far as allegedly staging break-ins in the Western Cape just to go and steal alcohol from closed liquor outlets.”
He added that no-one would escape the law.