The Hawks in the North West arrested a man who was allegedly part of a group that illegally mined about 170 tonnes of chromium of about R2.6 million.
Capt. Northwest Hawks spokesman Tlangelani Rikhotso said in a media statement that the man and his suspected friends were hit with chrome trucks in the Rustenburg area on Saturday. The vehicles and the loads were seized.
Apart from the Hawks, the Rustenburg Lightning Patrol, the Department of Mineral Resources and the South African National Defense Force were also involved in the arrests.
According to Rikhotso, the other suspects managed to flee and they were not found by Monday.
The 57-year-old man who was arrested is being charged with illegal mining, but more charges could be added later.
He will appear in the Mogwase Magistrate’s Court soon, Rikhotso said.