Blog 12 October 2012

News Updates today in St Francis Bay

1. 
ST FRANCIS CONNECT ARTICLE - Community acts against habitual criminal

Community stands together and acts in combating crime.  The communities of Cape St Francis, Sea Vista, Zwelitsha and St Francis Bay recently struck a blow against crime when they acted to ensure that a habitual criminal was sentenced to serve a considerable jail term.
saps cpf st francis bay stfrancisconnect

SAPS and Community working together

Andrew de Lange, also known as Outa, is notorious in the community for his many altercations with the law. On Wednesday 3 October 2012 he was sentenced in the Humansdorp Regional Court to serve an eight year jail term without the option of parole. His many transgressions include theft, housebreaking, assault with the intent to do grievous bodily harm and several drug related arrests. Excellent work by the South African Police Service combined with a high level of co operation from local security firms ensured that the culprit had been apprehended several times, but released soon thereafter. The community was of the opinion that although the accused had been arrested and convicted on a number of occasions, after serving seemingly short sentences, his repeated returns to the area coincided with immediate increases in incidents of housebreaking, theft and threats against members of the community. The community made use of the local Police Community Forum to bring this problem to the attention of the relevant prosecuting authorities.

The area is a sought after holiday destination and therefore it often occurs that holiday home owners who have experienced a break in, are not available to act as witnesses when their cases are brought before the court. The first step for the community was therefore to raise the necessary funds to ensure that the travel and accommodation costs of witnesses who had to travel from afar to give evidence, were covered. The Cape St Francis Civic Association realised the importance of this and they made a massive contribution to the fund, thereby ensuring that a witness could travel from kwaZulu/Natal to give the necessary evidence in court. To further strengthen their case the community launched a petition wherein they requested that the accused be tried in the Regional Court and that consideration be given to declare the accused as a habitual criminal.

The community realised that the prosecution of an offender is just as important as the apprehension of the criminal. The court will find it very difficult to sentence an offender if there is nobody willing to give evidence in the matter. This community will stand together and will not let crime get the upper hand.



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