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KZN cross-border vehicle smuggling kingpin jailed for 55 years

Cross-border vehicle smuggling kingpin Vusi Amos Zulu Malwane, 44.
Cross-border vehicle smuggling kingpin Vusi Amos Zulu Malwane, 44.
Image: Supplied

A cross-border vehicle smuggling kingpin who terrorised communities in northern KwaZulu-Natal has been convicted and sentenced in the Ingwavuma regional court to 55 years' imprisonment for numerous crimes.

Vusi Amos Zulu Malwane, 44, was sentenced to:

  • six years' imprisonment for kidnapping;
  • 30 years for robbery with aggravating circumstances [hijacking]; and
  • 15 years for possession of unlicensed firearms and ammunition. 

For more than a decade, Malwane led a syndicate behind a spate of motor vehicle hijackings in Emanguzi and surrounding areas. He smuggled the vehicles into neighbouring Mozambique.

Police spokesperson Brig Athlenda Mathe said Malwane escaped from custody in 2014.

He was rearrested by the Emanguzi cross-border operation task team deployed to clamp down on cross-border crimes, including vehicle theft, on May 9.  

Police commissioner Gen Fannie Masemola welcomed the conviction and said the task team continues to register progress, with the arrest of 75 suspects since its deployment four months ago.

“After our interventions and deployments to the area, 37 vehicles have been recovered and 27 firearms recovered with 321 rounds of ammunition,” he said.

Mathe said the court also sentenced Malwane to four years' imprisonment for escaping from lawful custody.

TimesLIVE

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