Image by Flickr

Eskom helps police arrest five suspects for selling illegal electricity

Eskom has helped the Hawks to arrest five suspects for selling illegal pre-paid electricity. The accused were nabbed in Rustenburg.


Image by Flickr

Police have confirmed the arrests of five people suspected of selling illegal Eskom pre-paid electricity in Rustenburg on Thursday 30 September.


The suspects, who were arrested in the early hours on Thursday, range between the ages of 36 and 47 years. The South African Police Service (SAPS) confirmed that the operation arrests were led by the North West’s Hawks’ Serious Commercial Crime Investigation team in Bethlehem, Free State.

“Five suspects aged between 36 and 47 were arrested in the early hours of today in Rustenburg, North West province by the Hawks’ Serious Commercial Crime Investigation team based in Bethlehem for selling illegal pre-paid electricity,” Police captain Captain Christopher Singo said.

ALSO READ: Digital Vibes: Six health department officials to be suspended


The arrests form part of an investigation program that was launched in May 2020 to nab illegal traders of pre-paid electricity. The investigation project came after the discovery of illegal or ‘ghost vending’ machines that produce pre-paid electricity for selling.

“Their arrests were effected during the third phase of the project-driven investigation carried out by the Hawks in Free State in concert with Eskom Investigators.”

“This project-driven investigation began in May 2020 in Bloemfontein, Free State probing the illicit sale of electricity facilitated by illegal vendors who have in their possession illegal electricity vending machines. ‘Ghost vending’ involves the illegal sales and purchases of electricity.”

The five suspects will appear at Fochville’s Magistrates’ Court on Friday 1 October.

Staying with Eskom, the power utility recently reminded low-income households that they can claim free electricity. The low-income households will be helped with free power to run basic lighting, basic media access, basic ironing, and boiling water using an electric kettle.

ALSO READ: Assets of former corrupt top cop to seized by the state