Police in Solwezi have confirmed the impounding of two Post International Courier haulage trucks belonging to Post Newspaper owner Fred M’membe, involved in transporting copper concetrate believed to have been stolen or obtained illegally destined for export.
And details have emerged that the trucks were loaded at a house instead of a mine or properly designated mine loading warehouse. Copper for export is loaded at legally recognized loading bays where appropriate documentation and official processing is undertaken.
North Western Province Police Commissioner Eugene Sibote confirmed yesterday that the two Post International Courier trucks were among five other trucks that were impounded by police last week, but could not give further details in fear of jeopardizing the court process which will start soon.
The trucks which were impounded by the Anti Copper Theft Unit in Solwezi last week were carrying copper which was either stolen or obtained illegally from one of the illegal mines owned by Chinese national.
Mr Sibote said following police preliminary investigations, Lun Express Logistics, a Zambian company hired two Post Courier trucks for their clients to carry goods from Solwezi in NorthWesternProvince.
The two Post Courier trucks registration numbers AJC66100 for the horse and AJC 6563T for the trailer and another with registration number ALF59620 for the horse whose trailer number is ALF81690T were impounded last week and Mr M’membe is reported to have been struggling to have his trucks released.
“Following numerous press queries concerning the impounded trucks, I wish to confirm that police in Solwezi have impounded five trucks, two of which belong to Post Courier International Haulage Company to help police with investigations.”
Mr Sibote has warned transporters to be careful which people they engage in their business transactions especially in North Western Province because some people had the habit of posturing as genuine investors when in fact not.
Mr Sibote said there were all sorts of individuals in NorthWesternProvince doing business adding that while some were genuine; others were not to be trusted.
“As Zambia police service, we are working tirelessly to scrutinize all business transactions in NorthWesternProvince. Our duty is to verify the authenticity of all business transactions,” Mr Sibote said.
Investigations are said to have been centered on the discrepancy between the declared weight and the actual weight of the copper giving rise to suspicions that the balance of the contraband could have been stolen.