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Report: 499 alleged abalone poachers arrested in WC within a year

Abalone poaching is rife in the Overstrand and while several police inefficiencies have been highlighted, police are slowly tackling the crime.

The abalone seized in a joint operation on 27 August 2019. Picture: @SAPoliceService/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - Police in the Western Cape have arrested more than 400 suspects and confiscated abalone worth more than R130 million in just one year.

That’s according to the findings of the Western Cape Police Ombudsman who investigated police inefficiencies in the region.

Abalone poaching is rife in the Overstrand and while several police inefficiencies have been highlighted, police are slowly tackling the crime.

Western Cape Police Ombudsman Johan Brand has found in his report that police stations in the Overstrand have 156 suspects while 107 cases went to court.

The Overstrand police area includes Hermanus, Stanford, Kleinmond and Gansbaai. Abalone worth R22 million was confiscated in the 2018/2019 financial year in those areas alone.

The Overberg Cluster, which includes the greater Overberg region, has arrested 204 suspects of which only 107 went to court.

Province-wide police have confiscated R134-million worth of abalone in the 2018/2019 year.

A total of 499 people were arrested in the same period, while 276 people went to court.

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