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Cops dismiss plasma TV drug link

It's been alleged a gang is stealing Plasma TVs to retrieve a chemical powder in order to manufacture drugs.

Alaska Boys from Duduza on the East Rand are addicted to Nyaope. Picture: Lesego Ngobeni/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Police are adamant that a spate of plasma television thefts in Alexandra is not linked to the manufacturing of drugs.

Several community members in the area are convinced a group of people known as "The Plasma TV gang" is targeting homes to retrieve a chemical powder contained inside screens in order to manufacture a dangerous drug cocktail.

It's understood there have been at least eight murders in the past three months in the area, all involving attackers who fled with plasma TVs.

A former drug dealer says criminals are stealing plasmas to make drugs such as nyaope, a cocktail that includes heroin and marijuana and sometimes anti-retroviral medication mixed with rat poison.

"We use it. We started to find that inside the plasma there are chemicals."

But many believe the gang is just an urban myth.

Authorities have dismissed the claims and maintain there is no link and the TVs are simply being resold.

Community members have yet identify any of the alleged gang's members.