GEORGE NEWS - A cleaner at the Outeniqua Transport Museum in George has been summoned to appear in court for allegedly stealing various copper components from the steam locomotives on display inside the museum.
The 45-year-old suspect was employed by a cleaning company that was contracted by Transnet to clean the museum, according to a statement by the Hawks (directorate for priority crime investigation) issued this morning, Saturday 8 May.
The Hawks national priority violent crimes team in George in December 2020 received information from the South African Heritage Resources Agency (Sahra) regarding incidents of theft involving steam locomotives located inside the museum.
During their investigation, stolen copper pipes weighing a total of 2,8kg were seized from the suspect.
The damage to the steam locomotives is estimated at approximately R215 000, according to the statement.
The suspect was summoned yesterday to appear in the George Magistrate's Court on 26 May.
Zinzi Hani, a spokesperson for the Hawks, said they are mandated to combat and investigate incidents relating to the national cultural heritage of the country. "The Outeniqua Transport Museum is considered to be an important roleplayer in efforts to preserve national heritage objects that portray the various means of transportation used in the country's history."
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