A joint anti-crime operation, involving the SAPS, City law enforcement and neighbourhood watches led to the arrest in the City Bowl of a 23-year-old man reputed to be a well-known drug dealer.
Another man was arrested in De Waterkant Street with 41 packets of tik with a street value of R3 500.
The night-time operation, Crime Free Night, on Friday July 1 ran into the early hours of Saturday.
Officers patrolled crime hot spots in Long and Loop steets, Somerset Road and various residential areas. And there were roadblocks in Mill Street, Kloofnek and Bellevue Avenue in Oranjezicht. Police arrested 17 people for drunken driving. The operation also involved traffic services, the Cape Town Central Police Forum, Oranje-Kloof and Green Point city improvement districts, City health and the Cape Town Cluster crime prevention team.
Police spokesman Captain Ezra October, said police arrested the “well known Nigerian drug dealer” in Chapel Street, Springfield Terrace, Zonnebloem, for possession of one bankie of pure cocaine and one bankie pure heroin with an estimated street value of R3000.
“We also arrested 15 people for drugs and two for dangerous weapons as well as one for theft out of a motor vehicle. All of the suspects were detained at Cape Town Central Police Station,” he said.
Mayoral committee member for safety and security JP Smith, praised the operation, saying partnerships were the best way to prevent crime. Partnerships between law enforcement agencies, community-based organisations and the public were crucial to making the city safer for everyone, he said.
“The uniformed services of both the City and the South African Police Service are not able to be everywhere, all of the time, and so we need as many hands on deck as possible to be the eyes and ears, provide intelligence to effect arrests and ensure prosecutions, but also to act as a deterrent to would-be criminals. Areas with active citizens or community-based organisations tend to have lower crime rates because of the higher risk of detection,” he said.
He encouraged residents to join the law enforcement auxiliary unit. Volunteers should be over 18, have at least Grade 10 and no criminal record. They should also be members of a registered neighbourhood watch and have completed a Broken Windows theoretical course. Volunteers could apply through their neighbourhood watches.
Nicola Jowell, chairperson of the Cape Town CPF and a member of the Vredehoek/ Devil’s Peak Neighbourhood Watch hailed the joint operation as a success.
“These initiatives are all about pooling resources and working for the maximum benefit. We all have the same goal and can be far more effective together,” she said.