Customs officers of the South African Revenue Services (SARS) seized 67 pieces of calcium hydroxide. This chemical is used to produce crystal methamphetamine. This drug is locally also locally known as “ice” or “tik”.
SARS routine inspection turns into massive drug bust
The substance was intercepted at a cargo terminal at the OR Tambo International Airport. It was valued at R40 million and weighs 132.41 kg.
With an incoming cargo flight, the Customs Detector Dog Unit was deployed for a routine inspection. While observing the collection of cargo, an officer noticed a vehicle driver loading goods from two boxes into his vehicle.
Upon noticing the suspicious behaviour, the SARS officers requested an inspection. That is when they found 67 blocks of an unknown substance that came from Addis Ababa. After using a drug testing kit on the contents, officers knew it was crystal meth.
The Hawks were called to step in
The South African Police Service’s Directorate for Priority Crime Investigations (Hawks) was alerted. The Hawks had to retest the substance and once again confirmed that it was calcium hydroxide. Both the importer and driver were arrested. Thereafter a criminal case was registered with the SAPS for further investigation.
SARS Commissioner, Edward Kieswetter, applauded the team for the interception of the dangerous substance. He also warned that SARS will not spare anyone involved in such crimes.
“SARS, acting in concert with other law enforcement agencies, will spare no effort in confronting those involved in these crimes and stop the supply of these harmful drugs that threaten to derail the future of our country and destroy especially our youth.”
Media Statement: SARS Customs seizes drug-making substance worth R40m