South Africa: Human, Arms, Drug Traffickers Targeted

 An operation in Eastern and Southern Africa targeting cross-border crimes rescued more than 300 trafficking victims, and captured drugs, weapons and stolen goods, according to an Interpol press release.

Operation Usalama (Safety) was led by the Eastern Africa Police Chiefs Cooperation Organization and the Southern African Regional Police Chiefs Cooperation Organization with support from Interpol.

They arrested 38 suspects in Ethiopia and 15 in Uganda. Officials also identified hundreds of illegal immigrants.

AK-47s were among the weapons recovered in Tanzania and Uganda. Other weapons were found in Burundi and Swaziland. Using Interpol’s stolen vehicle database, authorities located cars stolen from Japan, Malaysia, South Africa and the United Kingdom. In Mozambique and Tanzania, 12 elephant tusks were recovered. 

Other results include the arrest of a woman at the Nairobi airport with six kilos of heroin, destruction of more than 100 acres of cannabis plantations in South Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda, and identification of a suspected diamond smuggler in Botswana. 

The three-day operation took place July 16-18.