Freight and rail parastatal Transnet has said it welcomes arrests made in connection with the theft of petroleum products and rail equipment.
The arrests were made through a joint security operation between the State-owned company (SOC), the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation, known as the Hawks, National Intelligence and SAPS.
The arrests earlier this week, part of ongoing action against incidents of petroleum theft, are related to the Kendal-Witbank pipeline.
In addition to action against petroleum-related theft, the SOC stated that law enforcement authorities had also made arrests connected to the theft of Transnet Freight Rail’s (TFR) rail equipment, including electrical wires, contact wire and droppers, rail, signal rods and rail chairs. Theft of rail equipment results in train derailments, causing a huge disruption in the transportation of goods across the country’s rail network system.
The Hawks have made several significant arrests in the past few months in relation to this tampering with essential infrastructure and theft of petrol from several pipelines around the country. Most of these suspects have appeared in court and their cases remanded as the investigations continue.
Transnet has appealed to residents or anyone living near the pipelines or railway lines to report any suspicious activities.