44 North West Police helped criminals escape from custody

News South Africa

Tebogo Msimanga |

Opposition Party, Democratic Alliance says it is concerned that, according to the South African Police Service (SAPS), 44 police officials have been identified to have helped the escape of criminal detainees in the province.

In response to questions submitted by the DA in the North West Legislature, the SAPS detailed that 206 detainees escaped from police custody while awaiting trial or sentencing since 2019. However, of these, only 144 detainees have been apprehended to date while 62 suspects are still on the run.

DA North West Spokesperson on Community Safety and Transport Management, Freddy Sonakile said these are suspects alleged to have committed a variety of heinous crimes ranging from murder and attempted murder to the illegal possession of firearms and robbery.

“Detainees managed to escape from holding cells, or while in hospital, or during transit in between court appearances. Most of the jailbreaks took place at the Rustenburg, Potchefstroom, Boitekong and Mahikeng police stations”.

Sonakile added that it is a real pity that the work of many dedicated police officers in the fight against crime is being undermined by rogue elements within the ranks of the SAPS.

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