Chen Zhuang (29) and Mohammed Hussein (28) appeared in the Paarl, Western Cape Magistrate’s Court last week Thursday after they were arrested for operating an illegal abalone processing facility.
Initially Zhuang and Hussein were arrested by the Paarl Vispol members who stopped and searched a suspicious vehicle on Church Street on Tuesday. The driver and passenger jumped out of the vehicle and fled on foot however police gave a chase and arrested both suspects.
The vehicle was searched and about 8250 stripped abalone was found inside. Both the vehicle and abalone were seized by the local police for further investigation.
The Hawks Serious Organised Crime Investigation was roped in which led them to the suspects premises at St Francis Avenue. A fully operational abalone drying facility with processing equipment and more dried abalone was uncovered worth an all-inclusive value exceeding R1.3 million.
The suspects are expected to appear in the same court on Wednesday for a formal bail information.