The South African Police Service (SAPS) says that a tip-off led to discovery of “64 bags of dagga from a truck at a weighbridge near Mooinooi. The driver and his passenger were taken into custody and were due to appear in court today, Monday 21 August 2023.
SAPS Potchefstroom has been sketchy on the details of the bust other than to say that in “an effort to turn the tide against alleged drug trafficking, members of Rustenburg Flying Squad arrested two suspects, aged 37 and 41 in Mooinooi on Thursday, 17 August 2023, for dealing in drugs”.
The SAPS statement, released on 19 August 2023, reads:
"Acting on information received, the members followed a white truck from Brits Toll Plaza and ultimately stopped and searched it at Bapong Weigh Bridge, close to Mooinooi. Upon the discovery off 64 bags of dagga in the truck, the driver and passenger were arrested immediately.
The street value of the dagga is estimated at R5 million. The suspects are expected to appear in the Brits Magistrates’ Court on Monday, 21 August 2023, facing charges of dealing in drugs. One of the suspects is also charged for being illegally in the country.
The Provincial Police Commissioner, Lieutenant General Sello Kwena, applauded the members for their swift response, which resulted in the success. He said that the arrest will certainly send a stern warning that police working together with the community, will ensure that drug peddlers are dealt with effectively."
The arrests come at a time when SAPS Gauteng has issued new standing orders relating to cannabis arrests in which dealers do not have to face jail-time even if the quantity of cannabis in their possession is clearly more than for personal use. It’s unclear whether other provinces have done the same.
Even though The Phakisa Cannabis Action Lab initiative ultimately sees cannabis removed from the control of the criminal justice system, it still remains as a scheduled substance in the Drugs Act and commercial trade in the plant is currently strictly illegal.