R40m drug bust at Johannesburg's OR Tambo airport

Sars commissioner Edward Kieswetter hailed the efforts of the team that intercepted the dangerous substance. File photo.
Sars commissioner Edward Kieswetter hailed the efforts of the team that intercepted the dangerous substance. File photo.
Image: Gallo Images / The Times / Alon Skuy

Customs officers have seized 67 pieces of calcium hydroxide used to produce crystal methamphetamine, commonly referred to as “ice” or “tik”.

Weighing 132.41kg and valued at R40m, the SA Revenue Service (Sars) said it was intercepted at a cargo terminal at OR Tambo International Airport.

Its origin was Addis Ababa. The goods were declared as personal effects.

A criminal case was opened with the SA Police Service. The importer and driver were arrested.

A previous detection at the airport in June 2021 uncovered mandrax, weighing 1,746kg and valued at R105m, inbound from Kenya.

Sars commissioner Edward Kieswetter hailed the efforts of the team that intercepted the dangerous substance. “If no action was taken, our country and our youth would have been exposed to the danger of drugs,” he said.

“Sars, acting in concert with other law enforcement agencies, will spare no efforts in confronting those involved in these crimes and stop the supply of these harmful drugs that threatens to derail the future of our country and destroy especially our youth.”

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