• Prevention is key to protecting our homes from fire. In this month’s Community Safety Tips published from p52 in Servamus: September 2021, we share information about the common causes of fire and what you have to do in case of fire.

  • It can be a headache for authorities to identify the bodies of deceased persons. article published from p22 in Servamus: September 2021 provides valuable information on how forensic science and databases can be used in the identification process.

  • With their keen sense of smell, biological body-fluid detection dogs play a vital role at rape and murder crime scenes. Our article published from p18 in Servamus: September 2021 explains their training, work and successes along with their human partners.

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- S v Tiry and Eight Others 2021(1) SACR 349 (SCA)

Factual background
The principal complainants in this matter are Sasol and Engen who are producers of petroleum products. These complainants use freight companies to transport their products with tankers to various central destinations around South Africa, in this case, the Sasol refinery at Secunda in Mpumalanga, and the Engen depot in Mokopane (formerly Potgietersrus). Two counts (25 and 26) involved another producer namely BP Southern Africa and the transport of fuel to its depot in Pretoria.

Mr Nazier Ahmed Tiry (accused 1) was the kingpin of the entire unlawful operation which was to follow. Tiry’s main partner was Ms Patricia Dudu Nono Sangweni (accused 2). The two of them were lovers.

The Tiry couple initially lived on Zutundu farm in Mookgophong (formerly Naboomspruit) in the Limpopo Province, where an unlawful tank farm was operated supplying petroleum products throughout the province as far as Musina. When this enterprise was discovered and Tiry arrested, he and Sangweni moved to the Free State where they established a new unlawful tank farm operation on a farm, Quarry Hoek, near the town of Warden. The evidence showed that Tiry was the mastermind of, and ran, a criminal enterprise through which he stole petroleum products from Sasol and Engen, using the tank farms at both Zutundu and Quarry Hoek for this purpose. The farms were strategically situated in close proximity to the national roads used by the freight companies to transport Sasol and Engen’s petroleum products. Both farms were surrounded by high walls, and a number of bulk storage tanks and pipes had been erected, which were used to decant* and store the products. Tiry was said to have had contact with the tanker drivers who would divert from their routes onto the farms and unlawfully decant* petroleum products there. Tiry would pay them for this and later on sell the stolen products to fuel retailers and possibly others at a reduced price lower than the regulated price. These activities gave rise to counts 1 and 2 under the provisions of the Prevention of Organised Crime Act 121 of 1998 (hereinafter referred to as POCA).

The evidence showed that the drivers were aware that if they diverted in this way Tiry would purchase the product they were carrying. It was not established how the drivers came to know this, although a list of drivers’ cellphone numbers was found on a phone belonging to Tiry and one witness, who testified in terms of section 204 of the Criminal Procedure Act 51 of 1977*, said that he received a phone call from Tiry.

The common law thefts in counts 12-26 and 30-41 (also all predicated [found or based] on counts 1 and 2) were allegedly committed at Quarry Hoek. The stolen products were loaded at Island View Storage (IVS) in Durban and destined for Sasol’s tank farm in Secunda. As with the other counts, the State alleged that the products did not reach their destination, but were decanted* on Quarry Hoek. Accused 3, 4, 6, 7, 8 and 9* are implicated in this regard. Accused 3, 4, 6 and 9 were the drivers for various freight companies, while accused 7 and 8 were employed by Sasol in Secunda as officials entrusted with receiving products from IVS delivered by accused 3, 4, 6 and 9. They allegedly falsified documents to the effect that tankers were shown as arriving in Secunda and off-loading petroleum products, whereas, in fact, the tankers either never entered the tank farm, or arrived there with a tank containing water!

Discussion
On the said very brief factual background supra, nine accused persons (including Tiry and Sangweni) were convicted and sentenced by the High Court in Bloemfontein on various counts of contravening POCA, as well as various counts of common law theft of petroleum products. All nine the accused were sentenced by the High Court to rather lengthy terms of incarceration.

On appeal by all nine accused persons before a bench of three judges of the Supreme Court of Appeal (“the SCA”), against both their convictions and sentences, the SCA held that the tank farms were established by Tiry (accused 1).

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[This is only an extract of the discussion of this court case, published in Pollex in Servamus: September 2021. If you are interested in finding out how you can read the rest of the discussion, send an email to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.]

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Servamus - September 2021

The relatives of a Pietermaritzburg couple, who were shot dead in their bakkie on Old Greytown Road in March 2021, were angry when a young, close relative discovered a video making rounds on social media platforms showing the grisly scene.
By Kotie Geldenhuys
These days the media is able to cover almost every aspect of the criminal justice system, from the bloody crime scene and the arrest of the perpetrator, to the trial and eventually the sentencing of the perpetrator.
By Kotie Geldenhuys
Blood dripping from stairs like waterfalls and maimed bodies; decomposed bodies covered with maggots; small children crying out in pain after being raped by someone they trus-ted; and women with bruised faces and bodies who shamefully try to hide their pain and humiliation are just a few scenarios that police members come across when they are called to a crime scene.
By Kotie Geldenhuys
One of the most familiar cold cases, which still boggles South Africans’ minds after all these years, is the Gert van Rooyen and Joey Haarhoff case, when at least six young girls mysteriously disappeared in the late 1980s.
By Kotie Geldenhuys

Pollex - September 2021

Act 7 of 2021 supra appears in English and Afrikaans in Government Gazette No 44650 dated 1 June 2021. It amends the Correctional Services Act 111 of 1998.
This Act 2 of 2020 is discussed comprehensively in Ask Pollex in Servamus: October 2020.
Read More - S v Josephs 2021(1) SACR 450 (WCC)
Relevant legislation Section 302 of the Criminal Procedure Act 51 of 1977 (“the CPA”) provides as follows:
Read More - S v Tiry and Eight Others 2021(1) SACR 349 (SCA)
Factual background The principal complainants in this matter are Sasol and Engen who are producers of petroleum products.

Letters - September 2021

When police members turn 60, they are legally obliged to go on pension. Yet, that does not mean that they are "old".
Pollex noticed the following two letters in the regional newspaper Tyger Burger, dated 2 June 2021, which circulates in the Northern Suburbs in the Cape Peninsula.
September Magazine Cover

Servamus' Mission

Servamus is a community-based safety and security magazine for both members of the community as well as safety and security practitioners with the aim of increasing knowledge and sharing information, dedicated to improving their expertise, professionalism and service delivery standards. It promotes sound crime management practices, freedom of speech, education, training, information sharing and a networking platform.