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Three suspects aged 41 to 51 were arrested at 16h00 on the afternoon of Tuesday, September 19, 2023, on the N4 Road in the Middleburg policing area after being caught with a truck transporting stolen railway track worth around R3 million.
Police in the Province are working hard to address the challenge of damage to essential infrastructure as well as theft of valuable railway items. The Mpumalanga Provincial Anti-Gang Unit of the Police was tasked with the responsibility to help limit this challenge.
Members of the Middleburg Highway Patrol played a role in achieving a breakthrough. According to information, the railway track was stolen last month (August 2023) somewhere in Barberton, Ehlanzeni District.
A case was opened, and the investigation was handed over to the said team, with the hope of arresting perpetrators and recovering the reportedly stolen items.
Following an investigation, investigators gained important data about the case and then began some follow-ups, which led to the tracing of the mentioned truck which was seized for transporting the stolen material to an unknown destination.
The exercise led to the truck being spotted and stopped. This was followed by a search and subsequent discovery of a huge amount of railway track inside the truck. That is when the three men were arrested. The truck, along with its cargo and other goods, was seized for further investigation.
The trio was charged with possessing suspected stolen property in relation to the railway track.
The suspects could have also been involved in the theft concerning the stealing of a railway truck in Ehlanzeni District. Police are working in collaboration with the Department of Home Affairs after learning that all three suspects are foreign nationals but two were found without valid documentation to be in South Africa. These two are Mozambican nationals whilst the third one with documentation is a Zimbabwean national.
The two will be charged with contravention of the Immigration Act of South Africa. The suspects are expected to appear at the Middelburg Magistrate’s Court on Thursday, 21 September 2023 facing the said charges.