An employee of a maintenance company at the Medupi and Matimba Power stations has been taken into custody by the police for engaging in cable theft.
The police apprehended a 31-year-old man on Wednesday night after a high-speed pursuit. Two additional suspects, aged 31 and 47, were also arrested at a nearby informal settlement in Lephalale.
According to Malelesa Ledwaba, the police spokesperson, the stolen copper cables have an estimated value of R150,000.
An operation was conducted based on joint intelligence, and the Eskom Security Team successfully located the hidden stolen properties within the Medupi power plant.
To apprehend the thieves, the investigation team set up a trap, anticipating their return to collect the copper cables.
On Wednesday at around 23:00, four suspects arrived on foot at the power plant. Realizing they were being observed, they evaded arrest by fleeing in different directions and disappearing into the bushes.
A search was initiated, and the police encountered one of the suspects near the railway line, driving a Kia Picanto vehicle.
They attempted to stop him, but he accelerated and initiated a car chase. Eventually, the suspect was cornered and taken into custody.
With the cooperation of the apprehended suspect, the police were led to an informal settlement near the power plant, where two more suspects were arrested at their residences on Thursday.
The suspects are scheduled to appear in the Lephalale Magistrate Court on Monday, where they will face charges of tampering with essential infrastructure.
The fourth suspect is currently evading capture and remains on the run.