Police intercept suspected copper in Mkushi

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–Police has intercepted two trucks in a syndicate of suspected stolen copper in Mkushi district of Central Province.

And Mkushi District Commissioner (DC) Christopher Chibuye has commended Police in the district for their swift action to foil the suspected theft of 23 tonnes of copper cathodes.

Mr Chibuye, who confirmed the incident to ZANIS, said police had acted quickly to thwart a case of suspected theft of copper cathodes involving 2 trucks which were found along Great North Road in Mkushi’s Katuba area yesterday.

He said that he was equally impressed with the coordinated efforts between the Police Commands of Mkushi and Kapiri Mposhi districts, saying the combined efforts had culminated in the foiling of the suspected theft.

The DC noted that although the drivers of the two trucks had fled the scene just before police arrived, he was gratified to learn the law enforcement agencies had gathered some very strong leads to use for investigations.

Mr Chibuye disclosed that reports indicated that the copper cathodes were coming from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and were in transit to Tanzania.

He said the suspected theft of the cathodes involved the transfer of the metal from one of the two trucks found on the scene to the other truck.

The District Commissioner  further mentioned that one of the trucks was a Zambian owned Scania truck bearing registration ACR—4360, saying that its ownership was traced back to a Kitwe based company named Emageoy Enterprise.

Mr Chibuye the cathodes were being loaded on to the containerized Scania truck, from the Tanzanian owned DAF truck registration T-610 BKN, adding that its ownership had been traced to Imara Express Ltd of Dar-e-Salaam.

He also pointed out that police had attributed the success of the operation to a tip-off from members of the public, adding that it was important for the Police and residents to continue upholding this cooperation in curbing crime.

And management of Amazon Security Systems revealed that the impounded copper cathodes belonged to Trafigura—Impala metal transportation and processing company.

Amazon Security Director, Kibombwe Chabu, stated that his security firm was aware of the source and destination of the copper cathodes as it had a contract to provide security services for courier as well as storage of metals such as copper cathodes of Trafigura-Impala Company.

Mr Chabu said that 23 tonnes of copper cathodes coming from the Congo were on board the DAF truck that was supposed to be en-route to Dar-e-Salaam in Tanzania.

Meanwhile, Transport and Communications Deputy Minister, Panji Kaunda, also visited the scene where the two trucks were stationed, as he was coming from Northern Province on Road Traffic Safety Agency (RTSA) patrols.

Col Kaunda said he was cheered by the prompt response of police officers towards the suspected theft of the copper cathodes, and urged the officers to keep up the good work.

By press time, police officers that were stationed at  the scene where the two trucks had parked in the bush in Katuba area, had succeeded in transferring the trucks from Mkushi to Kapiri Mposhi Police station.    

ZANIS / ENDS / CM / EB———————-DRY