EFF calls for no leniency for those who profit from gang violence in Western Cape
“Those who profit by fuelling the gang violence in the Western Cape must be shown no leniency in bail conditions or in sentencing” said Economic Freedom Fighters Western Cape Chairperson Bernard Joseph. Joseph led a group of Fighters picketing outside the Bellville Magistrates Court to call for harsher bail conditions for suspected gun smuggler Irshaad Laher.
“It is a joke that the bail is set so low. Laher can pay R100000 with the change in his tiekie pocket from the money he has made from his criminal activities. The seriousness of his crimes, combined with the wealth and criminal connections he has amassed makes him a flight risk. The bail must be revoked and he must sit in a cell to await his trial.”
“Secondly, Laher’s weapons kill innocent men, women and children. His weapons hold people hostage in their homes, enforce the illicit economy and perpetuate a culture of violence and gangsters. Just because his finger is not on the trigger it doesn’t mean that there isn’t blood on Laher’s hands. The same is true for all others who profit from gang wars in the Western Cape,” said Joseph.
Joseph also called for a more thorough investigation into the criminal / political axis that facilitates the weapons pipeline to the Western Cape.
“These guns were stolen systematically and en masse from police evidence lockup. They were machined, tested, and then distributed. It is a massive operation that requires a guarantor from origin, en route and on reception. You hear of plenty of busts of drugs in transit to and from the Western Cape, but you hardly ever hear of gun busts. This is because such shipments are protected. This case only exposes one such tributary in the weapons pipeline to the Western Cape, but there are many other players. We must pursue those who profit by the gun with the full might of our criminal justice system,” he concluded.