PARKTOWN – Gauteng Provincial Commissioner of Police, Lieutenant General Elias Mawela, has commended the commitment by investigating officers who continue to ensure the collating and submission of watertight cases towards successful convictions by the Courts.
On his redeployment to Gauteng as Provincial Commissioner in February this year, Lieutenant General Mawela outlined six priorities towards addressing the high volumes of crime in the Province. Amongst the six priorities were addressing corruption by members of the SAPS.
To this end, the Commissioner has visited 23 of 40 priority police stations, engaging with the communities towards enhanced community-police relations.
What has been of concern at most of these engagements, is allegations against police were victims of crime complained about dockets going missing; police colluding with suspects and getting no feedback about reported cases.
This past week, a number of suspects were convicted for serious and violent crimes including murder, attempted murder, assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm, rape and robbery.
Other than a serial rapist who will serve an effective 110 years behind bars for rape and robbery committed in 2016 in Cleveland, the Courts in Krugersdorp, Wierdabrug, and Boschkop handed down: life plus 23 years for murder and attempted murder; 30 years direct imprisonment for house robbery and rape; and 3 years for assault with intent to inflict grievous bodily harm, respectively.
FCS investigators at the Province played a critical role in the apprehension and ultimate conviction of a child pornography suspect after being alerted by police in Tampa Florida in the United States of America. The man was sentenced to 10 years for each of three counts – unlawful possession of child pornography, unlawful creation of child pornography, and unlawful importing and procurement of child pornography.
Also on child pornography, a man will serve a minimum 5 years behind bars for child pornography involving his then 14-year-old step-daughter, with the crime committed in 2016.
Meanwhile, four suspects who are former employees of Johannesburg Metro Police Department were found guilty of theft of a motor vehicle, corruption and defeating the ends of justice and their sentences range from 8 to 10 years. Instead of presenting a stolen motor vehicle to the SAPS to be impounded, the suspects sent the vehicle to a scrapyard and the owner of the car opened a case at Orlando police station.
Other cases for which convictions were secured were carjacking and house break-in in Sebokeng; sexual assault and possession of a stolen motor vehicle in Soshanguve; fraud and defeating the ends of justice in Springs after a man claimed he was hijacked and claimed from the insurance, while he had destroyed the car.
It is within this context that the Provincial Commissioner sees it fit to commend these investigators, most of whom are low ranking officers, for restoring public confidence, which should ultimately encourage victims of crime to report the crime so that suspects can be arrested and removed from society.
“These investigators had a choice to make a “quick-buck” and make the dockets disappear but instead, they remained true to the calling to serve and to protect,” said General Mawela. “This exemplary conduct and conviction to the Service must be emulated by their peers.”