A nervous driver who had been pulled over by metro police officers in Khayelitsha for talking on his cellphone fled the scene when they started searching his vehicle.

The police officers gave chase but lost track of him. They subsequently discovered a R5 automatic rifle with 67 live rounds in the vehicle.

The vehicle was seized at the weekend on suspicion that it had been used in the commission of an offence.

Ruth Solomons, metro police spokesperson said “The officers were busy with crime-prevention patrols in Khayelitsha when they indicated to a motorist talking on his cellphone to stop on the corners of Govan Mbeki and Oscar Mpheta Street”.

“While issuing a notice, they picked up that he was extremely nervous. He gave the officers permission to search the vehicle, but when they reached for a black backpack on the back seat, he fled from the scene.

“Officers gave chase but lost him. In the bag they discovered a R5 automatic rifle with 67 live rounds.

“Officers seized the vehicle on suspicion that it was used in a commission of an offence. Ballistic and fingerprint tests will be conducted on the prohibited firearm.

“The firearm, including ammunition, was booked in at Harare SAPS for further investigation and the vehicle was booked in at the SAPS 13 camp, also for further investigation.“

Officers from the random breath testing unit were manning a checkpoint along Blaauwberg Road in Killarney when they stopped a driver of a white VW Polo at about 8am.

An officer noticed that the driver appeared nervous. He also spotted a red bag on the floor of the passenger seat and asked the driver to step out of the vehicle.

Instead, the driver put his foot on the accelerator and sped off. The officers pursued him, resulting in a high-speed chase along Potsdam Road and into the Dunoon taxi rank.

The driver then jumped out of the vehicle and a foot chase ensued, with the man throwing the bag under a minibus.

A metro police spokesperson said “Officers caught up with the suspect and recovered the bag, revealing 12 pistols with serial numbers filed off”.