There was no “enjoy your weekend” greeting for 23 allegedly corrupt SAPS and Tshwane metro cops as the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (Hawks) made a string of arrests across Gauteng on Friday.
Twelve of those taken into custody are South African Police Service members aged between 30 and 51.
Their arrest follows a three-year investigation by the Hawks Serious Corruption Investigation and Crime Intelligence on allegations of corruption-related offences at the OR Tambo International Airport.
More SAPS arrests are still to come
The arrested officers comprise two warrant officers, six sergeants and four constables.
According to police spokesperson Colonel Katlego Mogale, about R1 million in cash was seized from the home of one of the suspects.
A further five SAPS members are still to be arrested. One is in quarantine, three are expected to hand themselves over soon, whilst one is at large.
Charges relate to drug mules at airport
They will be facing several charges ranging from theft, dealing in drugs, defeating the ends of justice and racketeering.
“These suspects are reported to have involved themselves in the stealing of drugs at OR Tambo International Airport during the confiscation from identified drug mules. So far a total of 20 corruption case dockets have been registered,” Mogale said.
The arrested officers expected to appear in the Kempton Park Regional Court on Tuesday.
Eleven metro cops allegedly took bribes
Meanwhile, a further 11 Tshwane Metropolitan Police officers aged between 32 and 49 were also arrested in early Friday morning raids by the same Hawks team.
The arrests of one female and 10 males relates to an ongoing investigation that began in November 2018 into allegations that they accepted bribes relating to unroadworthy vehicles and serious traffic offences.
“The traffic officers will appear on Tuesday at the Pretoria, Temba and Hammanskraal Magistrates Courts,” Mogale said, adding that the operation is still ongoing.