The Hawks busted a precious metals laboratory in Hartbeespoort on Thursday and arrested a 62-year-old man for the illegal possession of unwrought platinum worth approximately R800 000.
Orelio Capazario (62) was caught red-handed while busy with the smelting process on two gas burners and in the oven, said Hawks spokesperson Captain Tlangelani Rikhotso,
She said an intelligence-driven operation by the Hawks’ Serious Organised Crime Investigation led to the arrest and upon a search of the premises they discovered a precious metals laboratory where Capazario was smelting the platinum.
“Bags containing unwrought platinum, chemicals and more processing equipment were reportedly found around the house and it was seized for further investigation.”
Capazario appeared in the Brits Magistrate’s Court on Friday and was released on R5000 bail. The case was postponed to 30 March 2020 for further investigation.