Donkeys Assist with Cross Border Theft

Donkeys Assist with Cross Border Thefts

Cross border thefts are on the increase with valuable vehicles being “towed” across the Limpopo by donkeys!! Minister of Police - Fikile Mbalula - has however set up tracking teams to deal with the vehicle theft syndicate and to pull in the reins on the smuggling of luxury vehicles into Zimbabwe and neighbouring countries. According to Mbalula’s spokesman, Vuyo Mhaga, "The team will work with other key stakeholders such as tactical response teams, public order police, the K9, and the South African National Defence Force." Areas to be targeted will be along the borderline between Pafuri, Beitbridge and Pontdrift.

Recently a white Mercedes Benz, belonging to a Durban rental company, was recovered when it got stuck in the river bed whilst being smuggled out of South Africa. In addition, a Range Rover, valued at R900,000, was intercepted on its way to Malawi. Limpopo police spokesman, Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo, said the smuggling of vehicles across the Limpopo was of great concern for the police. He said there was no specific model targeted. He added that other vehicles recovered included a Ford Ranger, an Audi A6, a Mercedes Benz C180 and a Datsun Go.

On Monday, the police found four abandoned donkeys together with a Mercedes Benz C220. Unable to pull the vehicle across the sandy river bed the donkeys and car were left while the suspects fled into Zimbabwe. Since January this year at least 88 stolen luxury vehicles have been recovered according to the SANDF. With increased police visibility on the borders the number of thefts has been reduced.

All new vehicles sold in South Africa must have microdot protection in terms of a 2012 government regulation. This ensures that vehicles stolen can be identified when recovered. Statistics show that the theft rate of vehicles fitted with microdots is lower than average, whilst the recovery of stolen microdotted vehicles is higher than average. Microdots are an essential protection for owners and have proved to be a huge benefit to police and insurance companies in assisting the recovery of stolen vehicles. DataDotSA now have representatives in Zimbabwe, Botswana and Zambia.

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