Last Thursday, January 13, at 5pm a man was driving near the town of Phokeng, the capital of the Royal Bafokeng Nation, which lies near Rustenberg.
He spotted a Telkom bakkie on the side of the road and a man in a Telkom uniform hacksawing a copper cable.
The concerned citizen was suspicious because the area had been hit by "massive" amounts of cable theft, so he pulled off the road and sat and watched the Telkom employee at work.
The Telkom employee attached the sawn off end to the back of the bakkie and towed it for about 1.5km to 2km, dragging the copper cable from under the ground.
Then he stopped the bakkie and returned to saw off the other exposed end of the cable, which he cut into smaller pieces and loaded into the Telkom bakkie.
The observer was convinced that the Telkom employee was stealing copper cables from his own employer and called the police, who promptly pounced on the suspect and arrested him.
Whether the employee was acting alone or is part of a wider syndicate within Telkom stealing copper cables remains unknown.