Gauteng SAPS Defends Arrest of 15-Year-Old Teen in Hillbrow After Police Assumed She Was a Foreigner

Gauteng SAPS Defends Arrest of 15-Year-Old Teen in Hillbrow After Police Assumed She Was a Foreigner

  • The Gauteng South African Police Service defended its reasons for arresting a teenager in Hillbrow, Johannesburg
  • This was after the teenager was taken into custody after she was allegedly mistaken for being an illegal foreign national
  • Tumelo Mogale from Lawyers for Human Rights shared their views on the incident with Briefly News
  • South Africans are unimpressed by the reasons given, questioning the logic

Tebogo Mokwena, a Briefly News current affairs journalist in Johannesburg, South Africa, covered police investigations and court cases at Daily Sun for over three years. Do you have a hard news story you would like to share? Email with CA in the subject line.

The South African Police Service defended why they threw a teenager in jail in Hillbrow
South Africans do not accept the reason the SAPS gave for arresting a teenager. Images: Caspar Benson and AaronAmat
Source: Getty Images

GAUTENG – The Gauteng South African Police Service defended their reason for arresting a 15-year-old in Hillbrow after they allegedly confused her for a foreign national who was in the country illegally.

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SAPS defends arrest of Hillbrow teenager

According to SowetanLIVE, the province's police spokesperson, Colonel Dimakatso Nevhuhulwi, said the police acted based on Section 41 of the Immigration Act. The section states that anyone who is approached on reasonable grounds by a police officer to identify themselves as a citizen or someone who is in the country legally should do so.

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Nevhuhulwi also stated that the teenager did not cooperate when the police wanted to search her and asked her to identify herself. However, the girl claimed that the police ignored her when she told them she was a minor and had no ID document.

Lawyers for Human Rights discusses case with Briefly News

Tumelo Mogale from Lawyers for Human Rights spoke to Briefly News about the case.

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"There are procedures that need to be followed when minors are arrested. This is because the Child Justice Act protects their rights. This will include the right to have their parents or guardians present. The parent must be notified immediately when the minor is arrested. The child must be assessed by a probation officer who is a trained social worker within 48 hours.
"Children who are older than 14 years should be detained in prison as a last resort. The Police must exercise other measures before detaining a person, particularly when detained for documentation. They can verify their status with DHA before detention to avoid unlawful detention."

South Africans disregard police's reasoning

Netizens on Facebook do not accept the police's reasoning.

Naty Xaba said:

"Unlawful arrest and unlawful detention."

Alx Mchenge said:

"Useless security."

Mashudu Rambau cliamed:

"Surely she was trafficked."

Thamsanqa Tiki-Bobani added:

"Lawsuit follows."

Collen Colenzo exclaimed:

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"Let the police do their job."

Bheki Cele ordered to pay man R500K for wrongful arrest

In a similar article, Briefly News reported that Police Minister Bheki Cele was ordered to pay a man from Gauteng half a million rand for a wrongful arrest.

This was after the man was arrested and was accused of being a suspect in an armed robbery. The man was detained for almost a month before he was set free.

The man sued the police minister for the wrongful arrest, which happened in 2017, and he won the case.

Source: Briefly News

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