A 15 year sentence was meted out to former Warrant Officer Danie Reyneke (63) by the Durban Regional Court on 7 September 2022, on charges of theft of firearms, illegal possession of ammunition, illegal possession of explosives, possession of unlicensed firearms and negligent loss of firearms.
Reyneke, a former KwaZulu-Natal Hawks member is said to have committed these crimes between 1997 and 2014.
He was arrested after the now retired police officer, Colonel Herbie Heap conducted an earnest investigation into the matter. In 2014, the accused was found with a number of firearms, ammunition and explosives.
An investigation was conducted by the Hawks’ Serious Corruption Investigation where Colonel Heap established that Reyneke, as a police officer abused his powers to steal firearms from the police stations in the Northern parts of KwaZulu-Natal. He would arrive at the police station and book out the firearms from the exhibit register citing that he was taking them for ballistic testing and not return them.
Reyneke had five licensed firearms under his name but only three were found and the other could not be located. He had not reported any loss on his licensed firearms thus he was charged with negligent loss of firearms.
After an intensive investigation, he was arrested in July 2018 where the court released him on warning. He was then convicted in June 2022 after which he absconded before he could be sentenced. A warrant for his arrest was issued by court and he recently returned citing that he was physically not well.
The court sentenced him to an effective 15 year imprisonment.
The National Head of the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation, Lieutenant General Godfrey Lebeya (Adv/Dr) commended the Anti-Corruption investigation team especially the retired officer who ensured that sufficient evidence was taken to court for a successful prosecution.