Probe underway into Central Firearm Registry unit

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Probe underway into Central Firearm Registry unit

Postby wrm » Fri, 2013-07-12 15:59

Probe underway into Central Firearm Registry unit


Pretoria - The South African Police Service (SAPS) has confirmed that a fraud and corruption investigation is underway into its Central Firearms Control Register unit.

This follows recent media reports alleging incidents of bribery and corruption of police officials in the unit.

SAPS spokesperson Lieutenant General Solomon Makgale said: “As has always been the case, SAPS does not confirm the name of any individual under investigation until there is sufficient evidence to warrant prosecution.

“Therefore, at this stage, no confirmation of investigations against specific individuals can be provided.”

He said, however, he could confirm that there was an on-going investigation across the entire gun licence issuance value chain and that this investigation was at an advanced stage.

He said he anticipated being in a position to give an update on the matter early next week.

New applications for firearm licences, as well as renewals, are made at police stations and renewals are finalised at provincial level, while licences and competency certificates are finalised at the Central Firearms Registry in Pretoria.

Over the past year, criminal cases involving corruption were instituted against eight employees attached to the Firearm, Liquor and Second Hand Goods (FLASH) component of SAPS at station, provincial and national level. This unit is responsible for, among others, the approval and issuing of firearm licences.

To date, one employee has been convicted and sentenced to five years imprisonment suspended for 10 years. He was dismissed from the SAPS. Court cases against the other seven accused employees, as well as two civilians, are pending. It is anticipated that more arrests will take place in the near future.

These investigations, informed by the Firearms Control Act, 2000 (Act No. 60 of 2000), have seen the Minister of Police, Nathi Mthethwa, establish a committee to probe the practices of certain allegedly unscrupulous firearms dealers.

This enquiry is underway and includes looking into those dealers who are not complying with the provisions of the Act, as well as those possibly colluding with employees of the Central Firearm Registry. SAPS is cooperating and collaborating with the committee.

Any person who may have information regarding fraud and corruption is urged to make a report at their local police station, or to make use of the Corruption Hotline number 0800 701 701, or the Crime Stop number 08600 10111 for anonymous tip-offs, or to send an anonymous SMS to Crime Line 32211. –
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