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Saudi Arabian nationals fined of R2 million for stealing plants

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Continuous efforts to deal decisively with the crime of possession of flora without documentation and money laundering, led to the arrest of six suspects after an integrated cross border operation.

 On Monday 10 October 2022, after spending a night in a guest house in a town in the Northern Cape, six males departed for Cape Town in possession of presumed stolen property. The police members, on the border of the Western Cape were alerted upon which they operationalised the information. They spotted the suspicious vehicle on the N7 highway driving at a high speed near to Bitterfontein and stopped and searched the occupants and the vehicle. They confiscated a number of bags containing seeds (flora). The six males were arrested and detained on charges of possession of flora without the necessary documentation and money laundering.

 Three Saudi Arabian nationals aged between 25 and 50 entered a plea and sentence agreement and were ordered to pay a fine of R2 million in the Vredendal Regional court on Tuesday 01 November 2022. The case against the remaining three males who were recruited to assist, was provisionally withdrawn in court.  

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