Corruption a ‘hobby’ in metro police
October 7 2010 at 06:59am
By Graeme Hosken and Patrick Hlahla, IOL
Corruption has become a “hobby” within the Tshwane Metro Police Department). This was revealed in a report by the Institute of Security Studies three years ago.
The report, “City Blues: Corruption and Corruption Management in South Africa’s Metropolitan Police Departments”, dates back to 2007, but nothing, sources in the department said, has changed in the past three years. Corruption remains a problem within the organisation, they said.
The Pretoria News and Eyewitness News in an investigation into alleged corruption within the city council revealed that more than 25 percent of metro police officials – including office-bound staff and those out on operations – were under investigation.
A total of 350 dockets have been opened by the Internal Investigations Unit against the department’s over 1 200 police members.
The report says the department is South Africa’s second largest metro police department with 1 914 employees, 1 220 of whom are police members.
The revelations come as the Independent Complaints Directorate is investigating the operations of an alleged organised crime syndicate within the department’s ranks.
The apparent criminal network, which uses State resources, sees members from the department’s Region 6 using strong arm tactics such as assaults, kidnappings and torture, to extort money from victims who include motorists, those using the services of prostitutes, and hawkers.
Region 6, which apparently accounts for more than 40 percent of investigations into metro police members, is the department’s city centre area of operation. It includes Sunnyside, Hatfield, Marabastad and surrounding areas.
Besides criminal investigations, members are also facing misconduct charges which range from the illegal pointing of firearms, disobeying orders, dereliction of duty and insubordination.
Some of those being investigated are facing multiple investigations while some dockets are for more than one suspect.
The report states that the department’s civilian oversight committee and inspections unit does not believe corruption to be a major problem in the department, but senior managers view it is as a serious problem, particularly at traffic rule enforcement level.
“The Conduct Investigations Unit sees it as a ‘very big’ problem, and states that ‘corruption has become a hobby’.
“According to the investigate unit’s head, traffic-related bribery complaints are received daily, nepotistic bias is prevalent throughout the department and corruption in the licensing department is rife.
“Some control dispatchers allegedly earn R30 000 a week tipping off towing companies about accidents before reporting these over police radios, while some operational officers allegedly earn R6 000 a night extorting money from drunk drivers.”
The report revealed that by the end of 2008 “The Code of Ethics” was meant to be in place, but setting up a complaints desk, hotline and vetting system had been delayed due to a lack of funds.
The lack of funds, a trafficsource said, has also led to vitally needed equipment such as specialised cameras for entrapment operations remaining unavailable, despite repeated promises from the department’s top management that such equipment was a priority.
The report says the unithas been unable to realise its goal of sending a strong message to the bribing public and corruptible policeman.
The report’s author, Andrew Faull, said victim surveys showed the sphere of government officials most receptive to receiving money, favours or gifts in return of service were traffic related members.
“This points a big finger at metro police departments that are responsible for traffic enforcement.
Faull said there appeared to be a pattern with the Gauteng metro policing areas of Tshwane, Ekurhu-leni and Joburg as having the worst reputation when it came to petty roadside corruption. He said recommendations from his paper, calling for various changes to stop corruption, had not been implemented.
“A workshop by the Independent Complaints Directorate and the Institute of Security Studies atten-ded by Tshwane and Ekur-huleni metro chiefs and senior staff dis-cussions showed that metros are facing the same problems as three years ago. Discipline within metro police departments is often handled by the metro councils and those who are disciplined are held accountable to codes of conduct and rules.
“A police chief, who has all the best intentions of stamping out corruption, has his hands tied if disciplinary processes involving council are beyond his control and not conducted timelessly and effectively.”
DA community safety spokeswoman in the Tshwane Metro Council Karen Meyer said the DA submitted an urgent motion to the council in May, based on information the party had received, “in which it appeared that at least 22 percent of the total number of Tshwane metro police officials had either already been convicted, were awaiting trial or disciplinary hearings.
“It is clear proof of the total collapse of our city’s law enforcement. The standard procedures used in the appointment of metro police officials, leaves a lot to be desired.”
Meyer said residents cannot be “saddled with metro police officers” they cannot trust. “The council is not doing anyone a favour by not viewing this growing situation in a serious light, or simply launching an internal investigation. By not addressing the problem correctly it will mean shutting down the whole department at the end of the day.”
» » » » [IOL]
High-profile cops had big money
Oct 5, 2010
Sibongile Mashaba - firstname.lastname@example.org
A TRIO of high-profile West Rand organised crime unit officers received about R3million combined extra income from unknown sources.
SAPS internal auditor Colonel Phumlani Matshona told the Johannesburg high court that he was approached by the police to compile a report about the accused.
Matshona was testifying in the drug dealing case of the unit's head, Dumisani Jwara, Victor Jwili and Landro Makgosani. He said he used the accused's bank statements, deeds registration, Sars, eNatis, gambling and property agency reports to compile a dossier.
"For the period between January 12005 and April312010, Jwara received R2299326,20; Jwili received R217454,96 and Makgosani received R230448,17," he said.
"As it appears the financial standing of the accused were not in line with the salaries they received from the SAPS," Matshona said. "It appears that the accused had other cash on hand.
"The sources of income are unknown. We could not verify where the money came from. They had sources of income outside employment and received extra income without authorisation from their employer."
The three allegedly ran a drug smuggling syndicate in the Johannesburg suburbs of Paulshof, Sandton and Fourways, as well as the Pretoria East surburb of Lyttelton between 2005 and 2006.
Some of the drugs allegedly sold by the officers included 198kg cocaine they allegedly stole at OR Tambo International Airport in October 2007. They got R1425000 for the haul.
Matshona said the inflow of cash was more than the outflow and it had not been verified where the rest of the money came from.
He said Jwara owned a property he bought for R645000 and another on which he splashed out R925000.
Jwara, who owns a 33 percent share in a mining company and 100 percent in a trucking company, also owns three vehicles: two VW Polos and a BMW 3 series. The BMW was purchased in October 2005 at R250000 and was paid out within 12 months.
Matshona said there were two cars in the name of Jwili's wife: a VW Jetta and an Audi A4. Jwili owned a VW Citi Golf.
Makgosani owned three cars: a Corsa, Mini Cooper S and a BWM 325i.
"The Mini Cooper was purchased at R316 888 g1 in May 2007. He paid a deposit of R76 000," Matshona said.
Defense attorney Nardus Grove said the report was incomplete: "It is like a half-baked cake."
The trial continues.
» » » » [Sowetan]
Cop shops (mis)managed
Lizel Steenkamp, Beeld
Cape Town - Station commanders are failing in their most basic duty of exercising control over police officials, dockets, firearms and vehicles.
Weekly inspections are "generally disregarded" and national orders are ignored. Furthermore, station commanders and other heads have a "serious lack" of skills and knowledge.
These damning findings are compiled in a report about what is happening at 733 of the country's 1 116 police stations by the police's national inspectorate which - between April and December last year - completed countrywide inspections to determine whether station commanders are maintaining discipline and whether police stations are being properly managed.
Bheki Cele, national chief of police, made the report available two weeks ago upon request from the Parliamentary portfolio committee for police.
Investigative work poor
The majority of the inspections were done at police stations in Gauteng (316), Mpumalanga (120) and the Free State (66).
It paints a bleak picture of the day-to-day activities at police stations and the lack of the most basic control and management measures.
The inspectorate found that detectives' investigative work is "poor" in all the provinces, among other reasons due to a lack of training and expertise. In KwaZulu-Natal, the poor performance is attributed to "dereliction of duty".
There is poor supervision and control of the use of police vehicles; while the Management of and accounting for police firearms is insufficient in Gauteng, Limpopo, the Free State, North-West and the Eastern Cape.
» » » » [Read Further]
Crooks in action: Corruption in SAPS Crime Intelligence
Devi Sankaree Govender, Carte Blanche
17 January 2010
[Date: 17 January 2010 07:00] [Producer: Eugene Botha] [Presenter: Devi Sankaree Govender] [Show: Carte Blanche]
This is a video clip of surveillance being done on a truck. It shows the delivery of goods. But it's not as innocent as it seems. These goods are stolen and those delivering them are about to be caught and interrogated.
[Clip] Frans: 'Are you allowed to sell 'extra' stock?'
[Clip] Man: 'No.'
[Clip] Frans: 'You are not allowed... get inside!'
The man doing the questioning is not a policeman, but is pretending to be one. Everything is being filmed and the shop owner is accused of buying stolen goods. A scuffle ensues.
[Clip] Frans: 'I'm a detective!'
[Clip] Shopkeeper 1: 'It is my shop!'
Frans: 'You'll never threaten me... don't take a chance. You will put your life in trouble. This f***** shop is going to be closed my friend...'
Devi Sankaree Govender (Carte Blanche presenter): 'These clips form part of about 18 hours of footage which reveals how a group of criminals pretending to be policemen extort money from a variety of people. This footage has been shot by the criminals themselves.'
This clip shows another scenario - more businessmen arrested for allegedly selling stolen goods.
» » » » [Read Further]
The South African Police Service: An Organisation on the Brink of Collapse
by Ivan Myers (B-Tech: Policing, B-Tech: Security Management; Nat. Dip: Safety Management, Advanced Higher Dip: Public Management)
27 February 2008
The South African Police Service (SAPS) has undergone three extensive restructuring processes since 1995. The result of these processes has been an exodus of skill and experience from the SAPS at all levels impairing its ability to deliver a professional and sustainable service. The SAPS is once again embarking on a fourth process, this time under the guise of aligning the Service in accordance with the Constitutional spheres of governance. The results of this current process,which has already commenced under the ambit of Agreement 3/2006 which was aimed at reducing crime, will be catastrophic for the organisation as a law enforcement agency taking the previous restructuring attempts into account.
The SAPS has over the last 9 years drastically lost its ability in the fight against crime due to various factors that include restructuring, loss of expertise and incorrect appointments. The current restructuring process promises to hurl the organisation into an abyss from which it will never be able to free itself. The top structure of the Service is to say the least oblivious to the effects of their actions and can aptly be compared to alcoholics who are constantly in denial.
This document will attempt to highlight many of the real problems facing the Service and particularly the Western Cape.
» » » » [Read Further]