Hundreds of cops charged with fraud, but only 22 suspended

Close to 900 police officers were charged with fraud and corruption in the past financial year, but only 22 have been suspended from service, a report revealed.

The SAPS annual report for 2012/13, which was tabled in Parliament, showed almost 98% of officers under investigation on these charges were still on active duty.

Eight officers were suspended with full pay, and 14 without.

“The investigation of allegations of fraud and corruption involving SAPS members includes both a criminal and a departmental investigation,” the report said.

The report also revealed that 97 of those accused of fraud and corruption had multiple cases against them.

Democratic Alliance MP Dianne Kohler-Barnard said she would request that SAPS management appear before Parliament’s police portfolio committee to answer for the ill-discipline in the service.

“This is further proof that the Minister of Police Nathi Mthethwa and the national police commissioner Riah Phiyega simply do not take criminality within the SAPS seriously,” Kohler-Barnard said.

Officers formally charged with crimes should be suspended immediately, and only reinstated if they were exonerated.

“It is these few SAPS members that tarnish the reputation of the thousands of hard-working and disciplined police officers who put their lives at risk daily to protect and serve South Africa,” she said.

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