A Ford Bantam LDV was noticed in Philippi on Tuesday at aproximately 5.55pm, according to Western Cape Police spokesperson, Captain FC van Wyk.
Western Cape Police spokesperson, Captain FC Van Wyk, said that on Tuesday at about 5.55pm, Phillipi Crime Prevention Unit members noticed Ford Bantam LDV in Philippi.
Police followed the vehicle until it turned into a premises on the corners of Schaap road and Boom road in Philippi.
“The driver of the Ford Bantam LDV fled the scene on foot on seeing the members,” Van Wyk said.
“Upon close investigation, members discovered a few abalone hidden in the back of the Ford Bantam LDV. The vehicle and the abalone were seized,” van Wyk said.
He said the police members decided to conduct their own investigation on the premises where the Ford Bantam LDV was driven to and discovered a very large quantity of abalone packed on shelves in different rooms where it was in the process of being dried.
Van Wyk said a large quantity of fresh abalone was found in a bath tub.
“The large quantity of abalone seized is estimated to have a street value worth R17 million. Equipment such as large commercial gas tanks, shelving and large steel tubs were also seized.”
According to Van Wyk, it took members of the Department of Environmental Affairs to work right through the night until late on Wednesday morning to count and bag the abalone.
The Forensic unit as well as Local Criminal Record Centre and Special Investigation Unit of the police also attended to the crime scene.
Police are investigation a case of dealing in abalone and is urging the public to come forward with information.
Station commander Lieutenant Colonel Desmond Laing said police would continue clamping down on crime and the perpetrators thereof, and he commended the members for a job well done.