Pretoria, 26 November 2012 – In the last 72 hours (since the morning of Friday 23 November), the SARS Customs team at OR Tambo International Airport has seized over 54kg of drugs – worth almost R16 million – in 10 separate incidents.
There were three seizures on Friday:
- In the first, a standard “rummage” (search) of an empty flight which had arrived from Sao Paulo found an abandoned “body wrap” containing around 3kg of cocaine (valued at R800 000), after SARS Drug Detector Dog “Dodge” reacted positively around a seat.
- In the second, a passenger travelling from Delhi (having transited in Addis Ababa) was found to be carrying approximately 28kg of “Crystal Meth” (otherwise known as Methamphetamine or “Tik”), valued at around R8.4 million concealed in a number of ladies handbags.
- In the third, a passenger in transit from Sao Paulo to Lagos was stopped for questioning and a search after SARS Drug Detector Dog “April” reacted positively to hand luggage. A search revealed that the hand luggage contained a number of towels which had been soaked in liquid cocaine, estimated at around 9kg, and valued at just under R2.5 million.
On Saturday 24th November, the SARS team stopped a passenger in transit from Sao Paulo to Maputo for further checks. The passenger was found to be carrying at least 5.5kg cocaine (valued at almost R1.5 million) concealed in two bags. A second passenger, in transit to Lagos was stopped for further checks, and found to be carrying 2.7kg cocaine valued at R756 000 in a body wrap.
Sunday 25th November saw 5 separate seizures:
- Two passengers arriving from Sao Paulo carrying cocaine in body wraps weighing 1.2kg (valued at R326 000) and 1.73kg (valued at R461 000) respectively.
- Two passengers in transit from Sao Paulo to Lagos carrying cocaine in body wraps weighing 1.65kg (valued at R434 000) and 1.61kg (valued at R431 000) respectively.
- One passenger arriving from Sao Paulo who has swallowed 80 bullets of cocaine, valued at around R216 000.
All individuals involved and the drugs they were carrying have been handed over to the SAPS for further action.
These seizures mean that already this month SARS has stopped over 90kg of drugs entering the country. Final November figures will be available in early December.