NORTH WEST – Petrus Toppies (53) was convicted by the Zeerust Magistrate’s court on 06 July 2021 for contravention of the Customs and Excise Act 91 of 1964 .
On 9 June 2021,the accused was driving from Zambia to South Africa when he was stopped at Kopfontein border post. The truck that he was driving was searched and 355 master cases of illicit cigarettes worth over R4.8 million were discovered.
He was arrested and the matter was investigated by the Hawks’ Serious Commercial Crime Investigation. He made a series of court appearances until he pleaded guilty and was sentenced to a fine of R100 000 or twelve months imprisonment and further three years imprisonment which were suspended for five years.