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S.Africa Customs seizes abalone, heroin at Cape Town airport, Beitbridge border

S.Africa Customs seizes abalone, heroin at Cape Town airport, Beitbridge border

JOHANNESBURG: Two people were arrested after customs officials confiscated heroin and abalone at the Beitbridge border post and Cape Town International Airport, Sars said on Wednesday.

At Cape Town International Airport, airline staff tipped customs officials off about a consignment in a cargo shed, spokesperson Sandile Memela said.

It turned out to be almost half a ton of dried abalone worth about R1m. Documents indicated that the shipment had been declared as car parts, specifically side mirror casings, destined for export to Hong Kong. The case was handed to police for further investigation.

At the Beitbridge border post in Limpopo, customs inspectors found 4 200 heroin capsules in a woman’s luggage. She was suspected of being a drug mule travelling into South Africa from the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

The heroin had an estimated street value of R314 000. Inspectors found the drugs hidden in about 10 000 pills, wrapped in bundles of clothing, when they put her luggage through a scanner.

The pills were confiscated and handed to police, who arrested the woman.