Woman, ex-hubby bust for drug factory

Getrude Makhafola

Getrude Makhafola

A woman and her former husband have been arrested for running a mandrax factory.

Members of the police's West Rand and Soweto organised crime unit swooped on the woman's two luxury homes.

They seized drugs with a street value of more than R6million at one of them.

The police said one of the houses, in Spruitview, on the East Rand, was used as a factory for the manufacture Mandrax pills.

Superintendent Lungelo Dlamini said: "We pounced on them early this morning and found the suspect, who is also the owner of the house.

"She is charged, together with her partner, with manufacturing and selling illegal substances."

Two men were found by the police drying the already mixed drug, which looked like wet cement.

Five big washing basins were found containing the drug in powder form, ready to be processed into tablets.

Gladys Motaung, 43, cooperated with the police and took them to her house in nearby Klipoortjie, where they found packages of the pills ready to be transported, estimated to be worth more than R1,5million.

Sacks containing starch and magnesium, believed to be used in compressing the drug into tablets, were also found, as well as R9000 in cash.

Motaung, wearing expensive Italian footwear, sobbed as her lavish lifestyle came crashing down about her ears.

All her properties and cars will be seized by the state.

"This is a major headache for me," she said. "Everything went smoothly until the last day like this one."

Neighbours in Spruitview said that Motaung and her partner, her 48-year-old former husband, Haine Mdakanethe, and their family had enjoyed a lavish lifestyle, even though none of them was employed.