Illegal scrap yards raided in Johannesburg

AGAINST CRIME: JMPD spokesperson superintendent Wayne Minnaar taking another step against crime. Photo:

EIGHT cars were impounded, five panel beating workshops closed down, 10 people fined amounts of up to R1 500 and several others issued with verbal and written warnings during a massive raid of illegal scrapyards in parts of Johannesburg on Thursday, 18 February.

The raid comprised the collective efforts of the Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department (JMPD), South African Police Service (SAPS), Johannesburg Roads Agency (JRA), City Power, the City’s Environmental Health Department, and the Johannesburg Emergency Management Services (EMS) in the operation Ke Molao, meaning ‘It is the law’.

Led by Superintendent Trinity Bore of the Region F Cluster, and JMPD spokesperson superintendent Wayne Minnaar, the operation targeted illegal scrap metal dealers and panel beating and spray painting workshops

The joint operation, spearheaded by the City of Johannesburg’s member of the mayoral committee for public safety, Clr Sello Lemao, was part of an initiative to bring to an end the widespread vandalism and theft of the city’s infrastructure, including traffic light cables, manhole covers, guard rails, road barriers, street name poles, steel grid inlets, steel reinforcements inside kerb inlets tops and fencing posts, which are sold to unscrupulous metal dealers for their copper value.

“Stolen cables are sold to illegal scrapyards. Businesses and the public continue to suffer as a result of these illegal activities. Unregistered panel beaters posed a health risk to themselves and the public.

“The theft of electrical cables amounts to millions of rands every year. Therefore, an operation of this magnitude is necessary and will be executed on a regular basis. We have to maintain law and order in the city. This is a national crisis and we’re concerned about such lawlessness,” MMC Lemao said.

It is estimated that the city loses R250-million a year to vandalism and theft of its infrastructure as well as illegal electricity connections.

Also See:

Booysens SAPS bust suspects with stolen copper

Alberton CPS arrests one suspect for cable theft

James Mahlokwane

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