Seventy valuable batteries found to have been stolen from Vodacom were recovered by police in Richmond at the weekend.
The batteries were worth around R200 000, police said.
Richmond police noticed a suspicious-looking Toyota Raider with a fully-laden bin covered in green plastic.
Police spokesperson Mthokozisi Ngobese said on investigation it was established the vehicle was loaded with Vodacom batteries.
“Initially the driver, from Lusikisiki in Eastern Cape, indicated he had purchased the batteries locally, but later acknowledged they came from Kokstad.
“At this stage two passengers in the vehicles fled on foot.
“The driver indicated he would be delivering the load to a dealer in Pietermaritzburg,” he said.
The police contacted Vodacom who confirmed that that 70 of their batteries were stolen in the Kokstad area.
The batteries are from containers that provide electricity to cellphone towers.
“The arrested suspect (43-years-old), who has previous convictions, will be charged for possession of suspected stolen property and will appear in court tomorrow,” Ngobese said.
Cluster Commander Major General Lucas Ngobeni commended police for the successful operations and stressed the importance of partnership in the fight against crime.