Pubdate: Wed, 13 Oct 2004
Source: Daily News, The (South Africa)
Copyright: 2004 The Daily News.
Author: Anil Singh
Bookmark: (Corruption - Outside U.S.)


Certain nightclubs and drug dealers had a network of informers within
the South African Police Service who tipped them off when there was a
pending raid, a senior police officer has revealed.

Supt Willie Louw, head of Operation West, a joint project between SAPS
and Durban Metro Police, said he had reason to believe that drug
dealers were being warned when police were planning raids on certain

Louw said that police were now employing different tactics to nab drug
users and dealers.

"On Saturday we raided two nightclubs in the Durban central area and
we have it on good authority that they were tipped off and DJs in the
club made announcements over the public address system that we were
about to pounce.

"As a result many threw the drugs on the floor or just left the
premises prior to us arriving. But all is not lost as we are now
taking blood samples from people we suspect may be under the influence
of drugs.

"saturday was the first time that we had a nursing sister with us on
our raids and we took blood samples from four people we suspected that
had taken drugs," said Louw.

Louw said the blood samples would be sent to Pretoria for forensic
testing and if they were found to contain any traces of drugs, then
charges would be brought against those individuals.

The blood samples are similar to those taken during police roadblocks
to test for alcohol.

Louw said that during the raid of the two nightclubs police found
drugs littered on the dance floor.

"We found an assortment of drugs from dagga, mandrax, ecstasy, crack
cocaine and cocaine. We found about R50 000 worth of drugs at the clubs.

"I want to issue a stern warning that we are aware of corrupt
policemen in the SAPS who are tipping off nightclub owners and drug
dealers about our raids and in future we are going to make it a point
of going after them.

"At one of these clubs the DJ made an announcement that we were on our
way to raid the club. If we catch them doing this in future we are
going to charge the person with defeating the ends of justice," said

Louw said police arrested 22 suspects for various drug-related
offences over the weekend.

"At a building in Smith Street, detectives also found a safe full of
'Black Dollars' which are used to con people into believing that they
can double their money."
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