Customs Bust SAA Crew Member With Drugs


The police, on Tuesday, confirmed the arrest of a crew member of the South African Airways (SAA) Samuel Thami Mthembu, for allegedly possessing over 35 000 epilepsy and hemorrhoids prescription tablets.

Mthembu was nabbed by customs on Saturday during a routine search. He was travelling from London to OR Tambo International Airport. It became apparent to the customs officials that the SAA crew member must have been on a shady mission after he failed to declare the tablets.

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Commenting on the matter, Brigadier Selvy Mohlala said:

“Mthembu, who is employed as an SAA crew member, was arrested by customs after 35,902 Epilim, Gabapentin brown and Burk and Proctosedyl Suppositones tablets were found concealed in his travelling bag.

The estimated street value has not yet been confirmed. We are not sure at the moment what he was going to do with them. The suspect was travelling from London to OR Tambo International Airport.”

According to Mohlala, the law prohibits individuals from carrying such large quantities of tablets since they are supposed to be kept at a certain temperature so as to not pose a danger to other passengers.

The suspect was granted bail of R1 000 at the Kempton Park Magistrate’s Court on Monday 21 November, where he was charged with dealing in drugs. Nevertheless, he would be having his next court appearance on February 3, 2017.

In recent time, South African security agents have been working around the clock towards ensuring the reduction of drug trafficking and its likes.

In June, Hawks busted a drug lab in De Deur Nigel run by a Detective Warrant Officer and four other suspects. A joint operation between the Western Cape Hawks and Crime Intelligence led to the arrest of the five suspects manufacturing and dealing in drugs.

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Earlier this year, four suspects were brought before the Muizenberg Magistrate’s Court today, after they were indicted in a drug bust involving drugs valued to worth R1.2 million.

The Western Cape police confirmed that the suspects were arrested at a house in Marina da Gama on Tuesday. They included two women aged 40 and 48; and two men, aged 21 and 39.