Botswana Police Service (BPS) has vowed to name and shame stock theft suspects as a deterrent because the matter has now escalated into a national crisis.
The Directorate of Public Prosecution (DPP) has partnered with the police in their operation dubbed “Kgomo Khumo” to speed up stock theft cases that are before various magistrate courts.
Speaking to The Telegraph, acting director of Anti Stock Theft (AST) branch Assistant Police Commissioner Emmanuel Dikgomo said the country is experiencing high rate of stock which has escalated into a national crisis.
He said new police branch has decided to name and shame stock theft criminals as a deterrent. Dikgomo explained that AST has created a data base in which all stock theft criminals are classified adding that this will also assist in their investigations.
“At the moment I am not at liberty to disclose to the media how many stock theft criminals that are already in our data base,” he said.
He added that in the near future, his branch will be able to categorise all the stocks theft criminals especially the repeat offenders. He said statistics has shown that repeat stock theft offenders commit crimes now and then.
Dikgomo said what they have noticed as the branch is that such suspects mostly use small vehicles to transport the carcass to its destination.
“Small vehicles that are commonly used to transport stolen meat include models like Vits as well as Hond Fit. Such vehicles are being monitored and some have been seized by the police,” he said.
DiKgomo stated that stock theft criminals are a mixed bag as they include professionals, politicians as well as herdboys who often connive with other people.
Last month police commissioner Keabetswe Makgophe launched an operation known as “Khumo khumo.”
The operation is doing very well, said Dikgomo.
“A good number of people have been arrested and most of them have already appeared before magistrate court,” he said.
Dikgomo indicated that they have partnered with the Directorate of Public Prosecution in order to speed the cases that are before the magistrate courts.
He indicated the operation will now shift to other areas that are perceived to be the haven of stock theft.
He appealed to members of the public to assist the police with any information that may lead to the arrest of other stock theft criminals.