THREE suspected copper thieves have been caught cutting cables near Polokwane.
Police said they were tipped off by farmers and security guards patrolling the Percy Fyfe Nature Reserve when they saw three men moving from pole to pole.
A 5m cable, part of the network that supplies power to the farming community around Mokopane, was found nearby.
Polokwane police spokesperson Superintendent Moatshe Ngoepe said the arrests had lifted the lid on copper thefts in Polokwane and surrounding areas.
The three men were arrested on Wednesday.
Police said they also took hold of copper-cutting equipment.
Ngoepe said a crime syndicate was targeting areas at night where construction work was in progress - and where there were few people.
Cable theft, according to police, remains a serious concern in Polokwane, with the provincial government worried over the effect the thefts will have on the province.
The men, aged between 20 and 27, are believed to be foreign nationals and are being held in custody at the Polokwane police station on theft charges.
Ngoepe said an investigation was still under way to connect the recent arrests with other suspects in hiding.