CAPE TOWN, October 1 – A woman drug mule has become the fourth person on a TAAG Angola Airlines flight from Luanda to Cape Town to be arrested in September, Western Cape police said on Sunday.
South African Police Service (SAPS) border police officers at Cape Town International Airport are determined to arrest drug traffickers from any country coming into South Africa through the airport and will continue their strong presence following these flights, spokesman Captain FC Van Wyk said.
On Friday, members of the anti-smuggling group attached to the border police unit at Cape Town International Airport conducted an intelligence-driven operation at the international arrivals hall at the airport, he said.
The information received at the border police desk from the crime intelligence unit indicated that two passengers who might be in possession of drugs were expected to arrive in Cape Town on TAAG Angola Airlines.
“These passengers travelled from Sao Paolo [in Brazil] via Luanda [in Angola] to Cape Town. The one was a male South African national and the other one, a woman, was from Brazil,” Van Wyk said.
Both passengers were stopped and searched by the police officers. The man was first to be searched and it was established that he was not carrying drugs. The officers waited for the Brazilian woman to come to the customs section where they stopped and searched her.
“She was detained and admitted to a medical facility where the contraband was collected. The exact value of the drugs, consisting of 91 bullets containing cocaine, is yet to be established, but it is estimated to have a significant value.
“The cocaine bullets retrieved, her passport, itinerary document, cellular telephone, bag tag, and hotel reservation were all handed in as exhibits. Her personal belongings were also booked in and she is being detained at Ravensmead SAPS for further investigation.”
Once charged, the woman would appear in the Bellville Magistrate’s Court, Van Wyk said.