Hawks uncovers another hydrophonic dagga-cultivating facility in Gauteng

Pretoria – Last night, the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (the Hawks) in Gauteng arrested 51-year-old Donee Kathleen Schmidt in Klopperpark in Germiston, Ekhuruleni, for cultivating and dealing in dagga.

Schmidt was arrested during an intelligence-driven operation which led the investigating team to her house in Welkom Street, Klopperpark.

On entering the house, the team found 120 dagga plants, including 50 mother plants growing in a room fitted with cooling facilities and lights, while some were planted in the garden. The team also seized 2 §¤ of processed dagga oil.

The woman is believed to be part of a criminal enterprise dealing in dagga.

She appeared in the Germiston Magistrate’s Court and was released on R500,00 bail. The case was postponed to 7 January 2015 for the closure of the case.

This is the fourth dagga hydrophonic laboratory uncovered in a week.

Last week Friday, 28 November 2014, eleven suspects were arrested in Sandton, Gauteng, and Hartbeespoort in the North West for operating three dagga hydrophonic laboratories. The Hawks and the National Task Force raided 13 properties based on information that had been received.

Today, six of the accused, namely Venessa Brass; her sons, Gareth and Trevor; his boyfriend Trevor Oscroft, and siblings Lava and Tiago Teaxara appeared in the Randburg Magistrate’s Court. They were remanded in custody until Thursday, 11 December 2014, to join their co-accused in the Protea Magistrate’s Court.

The Protea Magistrate¡¯s Court remanded the co-accused, namely Patrick and Justin Brass, Roua Prinsloo and Dawe Roquefort, in custody earlier this week. The Acting National Head of the Organised Crime Unit of the Hawks, Brigadier Ebrahim Kadwa, applauded the investigating team for their sterling work. “This dagga was going to ravage our communities. We are determined to seek until we find those who are behind these facilities to discontinue or they must be ready to face responsibility when we confront them”.