An illegal “factory” with equipment and abalone worth an estimated R2.5 million was raided on Wednesday‚ leading to six arrests in the Western Cape.
The raid was carried out by a team consisting of the Hawks‚ SAPS’ K9 unit and the Department of Agriculture‚ Forestry and Fisheries‚ using a search and seizure warrant‚ at a farm in Vredenburg.
Just two days ago‚ R2 million worth of abalone was discovered in two vehicles that were pulled over along Old Sir Lowry’s Pass Road in the Western Cape.
Hawks spokesman Captain Lloyd Ramovha said that six people were arrested during the raid‚ aged between 31 and 48‚ for running an illegal abalone facility.
“The continued identification and dismantlement of such illegal facilities has a direct bearing on addressing the plundering of the country’s precious marine resources. We shall continue with these raids unabatedly.
“We would like to further urge the public to work closely with us in identifying possible illegal facilities‚” said a statement issued by Ramovha.
During the bust on Monday‚ one of the vehicles tried to speed away‚ injuring an official from the Department of Agriculture‚ Forestry and Fisheries. The fleeing driver was shot in the hand and arrested along with an accomplice.