Wednesday, June 3, 2009

World's Most Wanted Criminals

Photographs of over 120 of the world’s most wanted criminals have been released as part of a major crackdown on international fugitives.

“Operation INFRA - International Fugitive Round-up and Arrest” will run throughout June and several countries are participating in massive awareness campaigns.

Crime Stoppers International (CSI) and its affiliate organisations across the globe, including South Africa’s Crime Line, are participating in the programme.

All these photographs have been posted on www.crimeline.co.za together with names and descriptions of the crimes each fugitive is being sought for.

Head of Crime Line, Yusuf Abramjee said, “Five countries have posted a list of their most wanted. There is suspicion that some of these wanted men and women could be hiding in South Africa and we appeal to the public to assist the authorities to help find them. Some of the criminals are dangerous, and could even be armed, they should not be approached.”

Among those being sought are drug syndicate leaders, paedophiles, human traffickers, weapons smuggling, robbers and fraudsters.

“Who knows? One of these fugitives could be a work colleague, a family member, a friend, a neighbour or somebody you’ve spotted in the supermarket,” said Abramjee.

“Operation INFRA needs your help, let’s get these most wanted behind bars.”

South African fugitive, Dirk Prinsloo, is named as one of the most wanted on the international list. Prinsloo fled South Africa while on trial with his ex-partner, Cezanne Visser, popular known as “Advocate Barbie”. Allegations against Prinsloo include charges of sexual abuse against young children.

At least 13 other South Africans are also on the list, they are being sought for money laundering, counterfeiting, possession of weapons and explosives and drug dealing.

Click here to view photographs and descriptions.

This is the first ever worldwide hunt for fugitives which is being co-ordinated by CSI.

Lord Ashcroft, founder and chair of Crime Stoppers in the UK says, “This initiative is well and truly an international one, it is not USA-centric nor Euro-centric, but rather world-centric. Fugitives hide across the globe in all communities, large and small.”

The international campaign, ‘Operation INFRA’ supports a positive and pro-active stance towards fugitive capture. Reporting the whereabouts of fugitives makes a difference in the fight against crime, which currently undermines democracy and the safety within our communities.

Crime Line was launched in June 2007 and already 750 suspects have been arrested and seizures total almost R29 million.

Abramjee again appealed to the public to go to the “Wanted” banner on the Crime Line website where photos of six of Gauteng’s most wanted are displayed. One of the men was recaptured earlier this year following an anonymous tip-off to authorities.

Director Sally de Beer from the office of the National Police Commissioner said, “We hope that with the assistance of the public, we will be able to track down some of the world’s most wanted. We have special teams on standby, ready to follow up on your detailed information.”

“Criminals know no boundaries or borders. They take refuge wherever they want to. The South African Police Service appeals to you to take a very close look at the photographs and to send your tip offs to Crime Line,” she added.

Tip-offs can be smsed to 3 22 11 at a cost of R1, or sent via the crime line website, www.crimeline.co.za

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