The Cape Navigator

Seaside Community Newspaper

Crime, Western Cape

2 WC Police Officers Sent to Prison for Corruption in Illicit Cigarette Case, Declared Unfit to Possess Firearms

Michael Hawthorne

WESTERN CAPE – Two South African Police Service (SAPS) members received prison sentences for their role in a 2011 corruption scandal involving the seizure of illicit cigarettes. Wilfred Martin (56) and Shaun Farmer (43) were found guilty of fraud and defeating the ends of justice after they failed to properly register all confiscated goods from a Somalian national they arrested.

Their convictions stem from a December 2011 arrest where both officers, along with a third officer, Jessica Leane Gordon (36), apprehended the Somalian national. Gordon was acquitted on all charges.

The investigation into the case, led by the Hawks Serious Corruption Investigation unit in Bellville, concluded in August 2023 with the officers facing trial at the Cape Town Regional Court.

On March 19, 2024, Martin was sentenced to a five-year prison term, while Farmer received a suspended five-year sentence. Both received additional suspended sentences and fines related to the possession of counterfeit cigarettes. Importantly, the court declared both Martin and Farmer unfit to possess firearms.

Major General Mathipa Makgato, the Western Cape’s Provincial Head of the Hawks, emphasized the importance of the sentencing in maintaining integrity within law enforcement agencies.


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