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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

East London Community Policing

Police trainees being assaulted during training (See label)

East London Community Policing Forum:
Review, challenges and responses, May 2006

Background note

     Community policing in South Africa did not grow out of a vacuum, let alone start from a clean slate with the SAPS ACT of 1995 promulgating a new policing dispensation in South Africa. One can take the onion peel example to look at a context evolving from a fully professional 1st world standard of policing in the pre-Apartheid era, with a militarised type of policing, to what we have today where the community plays an active role in partnership with the SAPS delivering a service, rather than providing the fist of the law. 

     Even this is not saying enough as little is indicated about the dialectics of change as one era never presents a clean break from a preceding one. Nor can future evolution based on the SAPS Act 1995 by definition prefigure a fully democratic type of security service guided by the needs of the community, by the community.

     Our main primary asset in the East London Community Policing Forum is the human resource made available by community activists who have accumulated experiences accumulated by diverse sectors of the community from pre-Apartheid times, through the negotiations period to where we are today. With the establishment of the Quigney Community Policing Forum we brought together the old neighbourhood watch, the Ratepayers Association, the SANCO Marshal structures and members from the main political parties, namely the DA through its Ward Councillor Avis Rens, and direct participation from the Branch Executive of the ANC. We have remained in the loop of developments commencing with the functioning of these various structures through the period of transition guided by the National Peace Accord, to the creative participation of community activists after the 1994 First Democratic Elections. Some of these were active in the Peace Committees of the National Peace Accord of 1991, others were serving in legal advice offices, some had community policing backgrounds in Area and Street Committees during township unrest since the mid 1980’s, and yet others have backgrounds in serving in the old Neighbourhood Watches organized by the Commandos of the SADF.         

     Community policing in South Africa has a local component that has transformed and interlaced with the formal Community Policing philosophy and practice, which was introduced into South Africa by aid agencies of western governments. In the Eastern Cape the role of the Commonwealth Mission to South Africa in retraining of township activists in community policing during the transitional years has been of inestimable importance. Similarly the experience of experienced police officers from countries such as the Netherlands and Belgium have left an indelible mark on the practice of community policing country wide as well as in East London. 

     It would not be far off the mark to say that the development of Community Policing in South Africa cut teeth during the struggle years, and matured with the blending in of community policing experiences from donor countries which maintained and developed standards to come to grips with the violent crime situation which only properly became visible once the new democratic government took office.

Community Policing SAPS East London

     In 1995 the South African Police Service Act was promulgated making it mandatory that every SAPS Station set up a Community Policing Forum. SAPS East London (Fleet Street) initiated its Community Policing Forum in 1999. Our first Community Policing Officer Inspector Nxafani set pioneering standards and instinctively focused on neighbourhood units as the first Sub-forums of the EL CPF. His creative instinct in establishing the first interim committees was in no small measure drawn from his POPCRU.   

     The Sub-forums set up showed distinct neighbourhood characteristics amplifying both the merits and the flaws in activating the philosophy of community policing. Scenery Park, Needs Camp and the Quigney and at a later date Southernwood hosted Sub-forums with varying degrees of success. In a number of areas we experienced the first hurdle to be overcome by keeping the community policing structure out of the clutches of local politicians. In Scenery Park the South African National Civics Organization, aligned to the ANC came to dominate and swallow up the local Sub-forum, which no longer exists.

     In Needs Camp a single issue kept the Sub-forum ticking over. Setting up of an EU funded satellite station was subject to negotiations and over stated expectations of the Needs Camp Community. While the community rallied with great enthusiasm eager to get the satellite station up and running, SAPS had to slow down the pace in order to properly equip and staff the satellite station. The level of community participation in Needs Camp is impressive and at the drop of a hat the community rallies in large numbers to respond to calls from the Sector Manager or to random crime indents. Remarkable about Needs Camp is the enthusiasm and quality of a youth group that has formed the backbone of the East London Community Policing Youth Desk.

     The Quigney is characterized by being the prime beachfront area of East London with a previously staid local community made up mainly of white  middle class residents living in cottages or retirement centres. Since the transition years there has been rapid transformation, as the Quigney became an attractive place for a proliferation of nightclubs, pools bars and discos. It became a transit point for many who after the revocation of the group areas act took up their residence in the Quigney before moving to other places in better suited suburbs or the large cities to take up government offices and civil service jobs. More recently the Quigney is undergoing its more recent transformation in becoming a favourite place for the many students choosing residence in the Quigney.

     Given these complexities and the availability of a large number of community activities the Quigney Sub-forum exemplified itself in the transformation and reconciliation process of community building. It has filled a void in community organization and become many things in one, but mainly concerned about crime and crime prevention in partnership with the Ward Committee, the Buffalo City Development Agency, retirement centres, businesses, and above all regular participation from residents.

     The Station Commissioner has taken pains to cultivate a best practices approach between the Sub-forums coordinated at the level of the East London Community Policing Forum. The East London CPF Committee meets once every fortnight to consider programme proposals from the Sub-forums and Sub-structures such as from the Youth Desk and the highly active desk of the Social Crime Prevention Officer, Captain Ndlela. Because these meetings are regular and kept business like they have become highly productive. Adding to the professionalism of the EL CPF meetings is the attendance by the Station Commissioner and his core staff. At these meetings differences in levels of achievements at the neighbourhood level can be ironed out and special attention given to coax weaker areas to action. 

Modus operandi of the East London CPF

     If we look at the general picture since the East London Community Policing was established with its arsenal of neighbourhood level sub-structures in the late 1990s, there is a clear watershed to be seen in the transforming of the Sub-forums into Sector Crime Forums. Often the role of a Sub-forum was indistinct and all too often they became bedevilled by either political interferences or personality clashes. Sometimes these problems became so fraught with tensions that entire neighbourhoods fell out of the picture because putting life back into collapsed sub-structures is never an easy thing to do.

     However, the implementation of Sector Policing made a very significant difference overall in amplifying the strengths of the stronger Sub-forums, and ameliorating the weaknesses of the faltering Sub-forums. We are finding a new breed of SAPS Officers getting the knack as community organizers and not afraid to roll up the sleeves and be part of community initiatives designed and driven by the local Sector Crime Forums. Often SAPS Officers take the initiative to give form and direction to community activity. The direct benfit of this home growen cooperation model is that such actions always are measureable by results and make a palpable difference in the safety and comfort of the neighbourhoods.

     Given the shared practices there are the following common features in the functioning of all Sectors:

1.       Each Sector is a distinct neighbourhood and easily managed for mobilizing stakeholders in local Sector Crime Forums.

2.       Sector Managers meet with a regular group of residents to keep a finger on the pulse keeping abreast community reporting and experience of crime. In the case of the Quigney these meetings are held once a week.

3.       At these meetings proactive measures can be planned for focused community patrols at problem places like schools, or mobilizing groups of stakeholders to address problems they are experiencing or which they are causing.

4.       Patrol Teams made up of community volunteers are active in two areas in particular, namely Needs Camp and the Quigney. In other areas such as Greenfields and Westbank there is involvement by SAPS Reservists managed directly at the Station Level. There is also a Forum for rural areas which functions loosely in conjunction with the EL CPF.

5.       From the East London CPF the work of the Youth Desk and Social Crime Prevention Officer cross cuts into all Sectors at once. We have an interesting variety of crime prevention approaches which are human concern and rights based, such as stimulating a gardening culture in rural areas, youth sports clubs, and firming up of informal employment opportunities such as car parking attendants.

6.       In a number of neighbourhoods there are regular problems around taverns, pools bars and night spots in general for which specific Patrol Teams have been established to assist in compliance with opening and closing hours as well as keeping order outside and between premises of such liquor outlets. At the same time in Needs Camp and the Quigney all nightclub owners are convened for a regular Tavern Forum meeting once a month. 

Disabling factors

     The lack of an enabling budget attached to the Constitutional requirement for setting up of Community Policing Forums has been a rancorous question at most gatherings under the banner of Community Policing. Full participation and required levels of dedication of community activists to keep involved often goes well beyond their means. This is particularly the case in the poorer areas such as Needs Camp.

     At the same time supporting NGOs are dropping off leaving a huge gap in bridging practical experience with research and development work. This problem has often been discussed at Area Board level as a lack of a clear succession plan and the need to revisit the governance framework of establishing and keeping Community Policing Forums up and running.

     Lack of resources specified for Community Policing at the Station level is also a disabling factor. Mostly the precinct of a Station is extensive and in order to ensure participation of community members from all areas Station Commissioners have to make available transport. This is a drag on police resources and especially as having vehicles ready to respond to crime are held up transporting community members of EL CPF meetings. Much depends on the dedication of Station Commissioners to Community Policing.
     While we in the East London Community Policing Forum are never in need of  transport and logistic support from the Station in making our meetings and events a success, this is merely coincidental in that the Quigney is close to the EL Fleet Street Station. But with many other areas distances are significant and SAPS either provides transport of they are left without the voice of these far-off communities. On the operational side there often are problems in that there is a shortage of vehicles to convey community members to CPF meetings as the first need is to respond to calls from crime reporting members of the community. The shortage of transport is the number one reason why residents perceive “poor performance” by the SAPS. This reflects negatively on the image and status of the Community Policing Forum.

Some end notes


      Much of our deliberations at the East London Community Policing Forum consider crime statistics, the impact we are having in eradicating crime and proactive measures that need to be taken for preventing crime. When these are considered generally speaking we feel rewarded knowing that our efforts are not in vain and have impact. Also growing business confidence and rising property values in the urban areas gives great satisfaction in that our efforts are also appreciated and rewarded by business interests at large. Stakeholders are prepared to contribute resources into our efforts. 


     Something that does not show up readily on a statistical picture is more of an intangible nature. When the community at large has a feeling that they are actively involved in a common project in fighting crime, they take ownership of their neighbourhoods and speak with a sense of pride about where they live. In this way effective community policing has a marked positive impact on local governance.


     However, the greatest intangible asset developed through effective community policing is greatly improved attitudes between community and the police. Whereas before there was a stand off and even suspicion of the police, with the ever presence and availability of a Sector Manager who is readily accessible to the community a gradual change resulting in a ground shift in attitudes has become palpable.


Berend Schuitema

30th May 2006

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Tobacco trade under Sanctions

Anton Rupert

Busting the Tobacco Sanctions-busters: Amsterdam 1974




P. 1

Beira Cigarettes – A Zephyr Diversion

P. 6

Rothman International – A.L. van Beek International

P. 8

Tracing Illicit Rhodesian Trade

P. 11

Clients of Smuggled Tobacco

P. 15


P. 16

Action demands of the AABN

P. 17

Import of Rhodesian Tobacco

P. 18

I.                   INTRODUCTION

     Within the framework of its disinvestments campaign against Southern Africa, the Dutch Anti Apartheid Movement Foundation (AABN) has concentrated on the question of Dutch interests breaking the United Nations embargo on Rhodesia. Although the embargo on Rhodesia had effect, it is clear that South African and Portugal are grossly undermining sanctions. This fact reveals the true situation in Southern Africa – the alliance between Vorster, Smith and Salazar simply cannot afford to allow the embargo to succeed. These allies see breaking the economic sanctions against Rhodesia not only as a life and death struggle of the rebel regime of Rhodesia, but also as crucial top the survival of white rule in Southern Africa as a whole.

     Conversely, it is obvious to the international anti-Apartheid programme that special emphasis must be placed on activities to make sanctions on Rhodesia work. Apart from the fact that the credibility of the international community, which called for an embargo against the rebel regime, is at stake recent events have added a new urgency to the U.N. Security Council’s sanctions campaign. The Portuguese coup is bound to catapult the Rhodesian conflict into a military pivotal point for the Southern African liberation struggle, making it an even greater military and political liability on South Africa. This in turn will hasten the day when NATO openly steps in to prop up a militarily strained South Africa. ((In June 1973, NATO’s Defence Planning Committee (DPC) instructed SACLANT (Supreme Allied Commander, Atlantic) headquarters to draw up plans for an allied air-naval task force to stand ready to assist South Africa should the need arise)).

     The Rhodesian sanctions campaign is not only the most lethal weapon in the arsenal of the international anti-apartheid movement’s fight to end racism and the vestiges of colonialism in Southern Africa. A failure of the campaign could eventually precipitate a catastrophic military intervention by the Western Nations to protect their strategic and economic interests by bolstering the racist regime. And this is the exact opposite of what the sanctions campaign calls for.

     Two days after the British and American veto of a Security Council resolution calling for selective extension of the embargo to South Africa and Portugal, the AABN began its attack. On the 24th of May, 1973 29 illegal transactions with Rhodesia, which had been traced by the Movement, were exposed in the Volkskrant. Simultaneously, the Daily Mirror published information on other illegal transactions in England. On the 28th of May the Movement published a document incriminating a Dutch firm, Joba Chemicals. The next day a Dutch socialist Member of Parliament, Mr. Relus ter Beek, asked for an immediate investigation into the AABN allegations that an international conspiracy, code-named Zephyr, had been set up to break the Rhodesia sanctions campaign and that one hub of the network was located in Amsterdam. 

     During the next few days more information was passed on to the press, and the international profile of the sanctions-busting operation became clear. (See Daily Mirror 31.05.73; Volkskrant 2.6.73; Dagblad Trouw 2.06.73; Het Vrije Volk 5.06.73). As a result of all the publicity the Dutch Economic Intelligence Service (ECD, Economische Kontrole Dienst), the Dutch government’s organ for investigating economic offences, called on the AABN to discuss the Movement’s finding (Volkskrant, 5.06.73). The Movement agreed to stop passing on information to the press in order to facilitate the End’s investigation.

     The written questions set by Mr. Relus ter Beek were answered in Parliament on the 28th June 1973. The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Van de Stoel, and the Minister of Economic Affairs, Mr. Lubbers, replied that an inter-departmental commission would be set up under the chairmanship of the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Dr. Kooijman.

     Over the course of the summer and early fall, concurrent with the ECD investigation, the AABN continued investigating the Zephyr network, the involvement of Dutch banks in the Rhodesian smuggling, and the tobacco question. By November 1973, however, the ECD had not yet made a promised return visit to the AABN to report on the results of its official investigation. Therefore the Movement went ahead and published its own findings in the Zephyr Report on November 21 1973. This 78-page document was widely publicized both in Holland and abroad. (The Economist, 24th November ’73; The Guardian 24th November ’73; The Times 22nd November ’73; the Times of Zambia; New Commonwealth; Der Spiegel; the Yugoslavian press; etcetera) and was discussed in the Parliaments of Britain, Switzerland and Liechtenstein.

     The AABN Zephyr action has been successful on three counts. The Dutch participants in the Zephyr network have been investigated and will presumably be prosecuted. Secondly, the inter-departmental Kooijman’s Commission was established and charged with the task of recommending how Dutch law can be strengthened to stop sanctions busting. Thirdly an overdue bill to prohibit the transfer of money to and from Rhodesia was speeded up through Parliament and became law in December 1973.

     Further development of the sanctions campaign depends to some extent on the findings of the ECD and report of the Kooijman’s Commission. Both bodies have so far failed to comply with an agreement to hold preliminary discussions on the results of their work with the Movement. At this point our campaign is being directed towards provoking a speedy report of the Kooijman’s Commission findings to Parliament and toward making Rhodesia a public issue.

     The first step in this direction was selective publication of other instances of sanctions busting. Following the Sunday Times exposure on the 4th November 1974 on the Rhodesian Iron and Steel Corporation Exposure, the Movement pointed out too the Dutch press that one member of the European American Banking Consortium backing the illegal venture was Dutch. This is no coincidence since other Dutch banks are likewise manipulating their South African interests in order to have financial dealings with Rhodesia. The AABN named three banks as being involved – Bankier F.V. van Lanschot, Bank Mees en Hope and the Amsterdam-Rotterdam Bank (NRC-Handelsblad 16.04.74; Volkskrant 16.04.74 and 17.04.74; De Waarheid 19.04.74).

   To draw public attention to the wide scope of illicit Rhodesian trade, we passed on information to the press that even the Dutch State Mines have contact with Rhodesian Firms (Dagblad Trouw 16.04.74; Het Parool 16.04.74; Het Vrije Volk 17.04.74).      

     A few days later the Movement held a press conference to reveal how the Dutch airline, KLM, was acting in contravention of Dutch law by sending money to Air Rhodesia and the Rhodesian United Touring Corporation (Het Vrije Volk; Volkskrant; NRC-Handelsblad; Dagblad Trouw; Algemeen Dagblad – all on the 20th April 1974).

     These exposures led to the following results: M.P Mr. Relus ter Beek has called for an official investigation of Dutch commercial banks engaged in Rhodesian trade by either the Nederlandse Bank (the Dutch Reserve Bank) of the ECD (Volkskrant 23.04.74) and an ECD investigation of the AABN allegation that KLM is contravening Dutch Law by transferring money to Rhodesian companies. Furthermore, Mr. Te Beek has requested that the Kooijman’s Commission speed up their report to Parliament.

     In anticipation of the long-awaited Kooijman’s Commission report, the Movement published a set of recommendations in the NRC-Handelsblad (April; 26, 27 1974) stipulating how the law, if it is to be effective, must be changed. The recommendations were as follows:

A.    Penalties.

     The penalties for contravention of the laws against sanctions breaking are far too lenient. They vary from a year imprisonment sentence and/or a fine of Dfl 10.000. Such penalties are ridiculously mild when one realizes the magnitude of the trade (for example the Rhodesian Iron and Steel Corporation deal involved 24 million British pounds). Because Dutch firms do not in fact regard busting sanctions as a serious crime, the Movement recommended that the Kooijman’s Commission drastically increase the severity of penalties and broaden their scope. This can be achieved for example by confiscating bank accounts and impounding firms.

B.     Transport of goods and Tourism

     Dutch law has never explicitly prohibited the Transport of Rhodesian goods by Dutch carriers anywhere in the world. Instead the Dutch government settled for a tacit agreement with Dutch carriers that they will not contravene Security Council Resolution 253. The ineffectiveness of this agreement was demonstrated last year when the Sanctions Committee for transporting Rhodesian goods blacklisted a major Dutch shipping company, Nedlloyd. The Dutch government merely accepted Nedlloyd’s word that the company was acting bona fides. This loophole must be closed. Similarly, the entire question of tourism is completely neglected by the present law.

C.     Embargo Southern Africa

     There is only one way to make sanctions against Rhodesia effective, and that is to extend them to the whole of Southern Africa. In the absence of an international agreement to that effect, the AABN urges a Dutch embargo on trade with South Africa and the Portuguese colonies that would be subject to a licensing system. The government must allow only as much trade with Southern Africa as pertained during the pre-sanctions period. Quotas and stringent laws of origin would have to be instituted; the goal is to strangle Rhodesia by controlling exactly what comes in from South Africa.

     The points touched on above form the backbone of the Anti Apartheid Movement’s recommendations. These have been formulated into a uniform and consistent legal model, which we consider to be both politically viable and juridically acceptable.
     This proposed piece of legislation we will publish as soon as the Kooijman’s Commission report becomes available.

     The delaying tactics of the authorities who have so far failed to effectively follow up on our exposures exasperates the AABN. Acceptance by the Dutch government of the AABN recommendations outlined above and vigorous law enforcement could put a halt to Holland’s trade with Rhodesia. Nevertheless, our Zephyr experience has taught us that the multinational interests gives then considerable resilience when harassed for their international dragooning, with or without legal sanctions. Multinational Corporations are in a position to employ many devious practices. Thus, even if the law were to accommodate all our recommendations, the international Anti Apartheid Movement will have to be vigilant to counter maneuvers by these Multinational Corporations. The Security Council resolution of 1968 specifically calls for material and moral support for the people of Rhodesia. We owe it to the freedom fighters of Zimbabwe to make the current sanctions campaign a success.

     After two years of effective campaigning to support the liberation struggle in Southern Africa, with little official response, the Movement is today presenting to the press the Tobacco Report, which is the start of a renewed effort directed against the tobacco trade and banking interests involved.  

     The Dutch newspaper Het Vrije Volk, which has consistently devoted coverage to the UN sanctions campaign, did pioneer work on the tobacco issue. The newspaper’s reporting on the Rhodesian Tobacco imports into Holland (5.06.73; 706.73; 16.06.73; 10.07.73; 21.07.73) sparked enough public interest to prompt the Dutch Minister of Economic Affairs to stat in Parliament that he would inquire into the need for a close check on the origin of tobacco. (Het Vrije Volk, 21st July ‘73). The statistics presented in Het Vrije Volk were flawless, their findings staggering: one third of Dutch tobacco imports come from Rhodesia  - 6,000 metric tons per annum. It is no wonder then that the movement was stunned when the ECD in the beginning of May 1974, reported to the authorities that no trace of tobacco smuggling could be found in Holland and that further investigation is uncalled for.

     The sanctions campaign of the Anti apartheid Movement was preceded by a period of research into the tobacco industry. A number of documents linked Joba Chemicals to the importing of large amounts of Cigarettes from Beira, but this discovery turned out to be a fortuitous, which led the Movement to unearthing the entire Zephyr network. Tracking these connections took many months and diverted attention from the tobacco issue. For the record, information on the cigarette deals, which was completely neglected in the Zephyr report, will not be divulged. Further delving into this specific question may shed more light on one aspect of tobacco smuggling, i.e. unloading of finished tobacco products, which might otherwise be overlooked in concentrating solely on bulk tobacco imports.

     Joba had access to vast quantities of cigarettes that were warehoused in Beira from late 1972 until early 1973.

     Document 509 A: states that there were in stock 4,800.000 State Express 555 cigarettes in the Mozambique port of Beira. Also there were 1,000,000 of the same brand in the Free Port of Amsterdam.

     Document 509 C: states that there were also supplies of Embassy, Lucky Strike and Life (King size and filter tipped) in the Free Port area of Amsterdam.

     Document 509 B: states that there are supplies of Peter Stuyvesant, Rothmans, and Benson & Hedges available ex Beira and that prospective clients were requested to sample Gold Leaf, Embassy, Lucky Strike Benson & Hedges and State Express before sale.

     Offerings of these cigarettes were made to the following companies:

1.      Messrs. Calimax, P.O. Box 100631
565 Solingen – 1
BDR (509 A)     
2.      Zerse and Co.
      Scheeps Makelaar
      Hamburg (512)

3.      Avimar Antwerp
      Belgium (511)

4.      Bruders Heineman
      Hamburg (513)

     Stocks of these cigarettes were held at Datema, Rotterdam, attention Mr. Kroonstuiwer. (511)

     All these above companies asked for and actually received samples. An additional firm U.B.S.D, Private Entrepot, 30 Merhemse, 2000 Antwerp was sent samples of State Express. (514)

     The Joba cigarettes business was highly suspect and at least one firm would have nothing to do with approaches from Joba. In a telex Zerse refers to a letter sent to Joba requesting the origin of the cigarettes, especially the Peter Stuyvesant brand, before any serious consideration could be given to the offerings. (518). Joba apparently never replied.

     A mysterious conclusion to these transactions occurred when a prospective client apparently put a temporary end to this devious trade by having lawyers impound a consignment of cigarettes in Rotterdam. Further investigation of this by the AABN, as has been stated, led to uncovering of an internationally organized ring of petty thieves, the notorious Zephyr Network. It was a profitable diversion, but hard facts on the tobacco trade were still earned.         


     No two men can be more informed on tobacco smuggling trade than the leaders of these two companies, Mr. Anton Rupert and Mr. L van Beek. Anton Rupert, man behind ambitious schemes like the banking consortium Edesa for so-called development of Southern Africa, and Adela for so-called development of Latin America, and A.L. van Beek, involved in projects like the foundation of the Erasmus University in Rotterdam, are both leaders of companies engaged in sabotaging the sanctions campaign of the United Nations.

     Symbolic of the influential position their company’s hold is the fact that a ROTHMANS man, Mr. P. Ingwerson  (Manager of the Dutch Rothman’s subsidiary Tobacco Export Import Compagnie, TEIC) and A.L. van Beek, top man in his own company, are also the top two people in the Dutch Tobacco Dealers Association – the former as Manager, the latter as Secretary.

     The main offices of the Dutch / Rhodesia importers are located in Rotterdam and Amsterdam. A.L. van BEEK INTERNATIONAL is housed in a large building close to the centre of Rotterdam city with a huge bonded warehouse close by.

     Among the people who work at van Beek’s Rotterdam offices and who are probably the best informed on smuggling procedures are Mr. Nauta and Mr. Sterken. Mr. Nauta keeps regular contact with Rhodesia and is scheduled to visit his colleagues Mr. Eric Hewitt of Rhodesian Tobacco Suppliers Co. (R.T.S.) is Rhodesia shortly.  (430) Mr. Sterken is the expert who is responsible for drawing up the plans whereby Dutch and Scandinavian firms will receive Rhodesian flue-cured and Rhodesian burley tobacco during 1974 / 1971. (337).

     In Amsterdam two tobacco importers, Oskar Rohta Jishoot and T.E.I.C each with a share of 50 % in Salisbury Tobacco Importers (SALTOBEX) keep regular contact with Rhodesia, mainly through the offices of T.E.I.C. There is also regular contact in Amsterdam and their colleagues Messrs Jansen and Maxwell of SALTOBEX in Rhodesia. (310, 27, 327, 363 are examples).

     The international corporate structure of the two main culprit companies (A.L. van Beek International B.V. and T.E.I.C vast and complicated. For example, the following table lists the subsidiaries of A.L. van BEEK:            
A.L van BEEK, N.V. Rotterdam:

Balkan Tabakhandelgesellschaft, mbH, W. Germany
A.L. van BEEK (Onroerend Goed) N.V.
Commercial Overbeck, Cia, Brazil
Hobeeka-Lancaster C por A (A) Dominican Republic
Hofor Tobacco Corporation, U.S.A
Hollandsche Turksche Tabak Mij N.V.
Hollandsche Turksche Tabak Mij N.V, Izmir – Turkey
Hollandsche Turksche Tabak Mij N.V. Samsun – Turkey

“Holtab” Hollandsche Tabak Mij
“Holtab” Hollandsche Tabak Mij N.V, Greece
F.C. Martfelt & Cia, Ltda (A), Brazil
Reneman & van der Heiden, N.V. (A)
Rhodesian Tobacco Suppliers (Pty) Ltd., Rhodesia
Rhodesia Tobacco Packers (Pty) Ltd. (A), Rhodesia
Tobacos del Caribe (Colombia Ltda., Colombia
Tobacco Suppliers Ltd., Malawi
Tobacco Suppliers (Zambia) Ltd., Zambia

     T.E.I.C. is one member of a corporate family numbering somewhere around 83 firms, stretching from Jamaica to Fiji.

     Regarding Rhodesian business there is regular briefing between Rotterdam and Hofor Corporation in New York. Document 317, for example, is a letter from van Beek/Rotterdam to Hofor/New York, following a visit from a van BEEK employee to Mr. Hewitt (R.T.S). It reports on the quality of produce available at the Rhodesian tobacco auctions and instructs Hofor to use information as a basis for making offers to American customers.   

     T.E.I.C organizes its smuggling in a manner similar to that of van BEEK. From Amsterdam there is communication with other Rothmans connections throughout the world. VERAFUMOS (Brazil) is one extremely important link. VERAFUMOS keeps SALTOBEX in Rhodesia briefed on the Brazilian situation in weekly reports. (64 A, 64 B, 66 C) Types of tobacco mainly Virginia flue-cured from VERAFUMOS and SALTOBEX correspond closely, and both companies largely supply the same clients. Douwe Egberts, a major Dutch client, has direct contact, via T.E.I.C. in Amsterdam, with VERFUMOS and SALTOBEX (379). VERAFUMOS keeps T.E.I.C. closely informed on a day-to-day basis for the execution of orders.       

     Minutes of a meeting held on February 28th, 1974 at VERAFUMOS, Vera Cruz, Brazil, illustrate the intense degree of international organization of the tobacco trade. Present at this meeting were the top brass of the industry:

J.A. Rupert – Executive Director of Rupert International, South Africa
A.V. Guimaraes – Chief Executive of A. Tabaqueira, Sarl, Portugal
F.P. Noquira – Chief Engineer of A. Tabaqueira, Sarl, Portugal
Mario Soares – Chief Executive, Cia Industrial de Fumos Lopes, Brazil
F.W van Zijl – Chief Leaf Buyer and Executive Director of Rupert   
                         International, South Africa
Dr. P.P. Bing – President VERAFUMOS, Brazil

     At the meeting the ubiquitous Mr. F.A.C. Jansen, of SALTOBEX, was also present.

     The agenda concentrated on matters concerning VERAFUMOS. One sinister plan discussed was how to undercut wages for labourers in Brazil by turning them into peasants. It was estimated that the wage cost difference between “wage earners” and “private farmers” is 50%. Rupert proposed that VERAFUMOS should buy up land and lease it back in states like Mato Grasso, to potential farmers who were considered “psychologically suited” for this plan. (363 D)

     The meeting demonstrates the high degree of vertical and horizontal organization of Rothmans International. All persons at the meeting represented firms affiliated with the multinational, and the scope of operations extends all the way from planting to packing, producing and dealing in cigars and cigarettes. Within an organization of this nature it becomes relatively simple to camouflage Rhodesian smuggling. To trace a bale of tobacco from Rhodesia is almost impossible.

     From T.E.I.C. (Amsterdam) office information on Rhodesia is also disseminated to other Rothman’s offices in Europe. Document 327 A reveals that the Antwerp office, “C.I.E.T.” Import en Export Blad N.V. was given information passed by T.E.I.C to Jansen (SALTOBEX) on buying operations. 


     The high degree of organization of the tobacco industry is the reason why smuggling of Rhodesian tobacco has been able to flourish for so long; undetected but not unsuspected. It is a public secret that Holland is massively involved in the Rhodesian tobacco trade.

     The smugglers have developed considerable sophistication in camouflaging the physical movement of Rhodesian goods, especially with false certificates of origin. In other facets of the trade however, the same degree of sophistication has not been achieved.

     First with regard to communications, when a firm like T.E.I.C. maintains close contact with Rhodesian affiliates like SALTOBEX, the defence that they have “no control over operations” soon becomes untenable.


      Document 33 is a letter from T.E.I.C. to SALTOBEX dated 22.03.74, requesting documents to get to T.E.I.C. before 31.03.74 in order to consolidate annual accounts. Reference is made to instructions on how entries in the books of SALTOBEX should be made concerning dealings with Rothmans International.

     Document 47 is a letter with a similar request to SALTOBEX, but it relates to consolidation figures of Texport Holdings, Texport and Tobacco Exporters, firms with addresses in Malawi. A page from the books of T.E.I.C. reveals that on the 31.03.74 a dividend was received of Rhodesian $ 74.554,50 (383.955,68 Dfl) Texport Holdings, which is 25% held by T.E.I.C. contributed Rhodesian $ 11.200 (54.947,61 Dfl) Tobacco Exporters (Pty) Ltd., 50% held by T.E.I.C., likewise contributed Malawi Kwachas 6,812 (21.697,19 Dfl) (355)

     Document 489, from the annual report of 1969 calls the progress of the Rhodesian connection “satisfactory”. Document 493 reveals that SALTOBEX has a current loan account with T.E.I.C of 566.105,10 Dfl.

     Tracing the trading links presents more of a problem. Even though one can, for example, legitimately question the current loan account of SALTOBEX with T.E.I.C. as trade between the two must somehow be involved the loan itself is not enough to force the ECD to investigate the underlying facts of the case.  

     By examining turnover figures of the T.E.I.C. suspicions arise. In 1970 the total amounted to Dfl 10 million. Of this 3 million was from Mozambique. A further Dfl 2 million from “Virginia Laurens”, which could represent Rhodesian trade since Laurens is a Rothmans affiliate in Switzerland where Rhodesian tobacco is allowed. (506) Thus one half of T.E.I.C. imports are from Southern Africa, with no specific reference in their internal records to South African or Rhodesian tobacco. It is even more difficult to explain away these totals when one notes that according FAO export statistics, Mozambique in 1970 exported only 932 tons of tobacco. And during 1969-1970 T.E.I.C. sold more than two times this amount.

     Nevertheless, even more direct evidence of Rhodesian smuggling exists, e.g. the following types of communications occur. On March 28th 1974 T.E.I.C. received a telex from the Einhauf organization der Oosterreiches Tabaksregie (Austrian State tobacco monopoly) ordering a large quantity of between 100 to 200 tons of South African “X40” grade tobacco. (114). T.E.I.C confirmed this (116) and sent the following telex to SALTOBEX on the same day:

     “For Jansen dogs give boxing order x four o bunny balls at a/oo award provisional quantity 100/200 groups subject boxing items definite price require weekly report re purchase basis total boxing weight total sales price”      
          Nowhere else in the normal trade does such coding occur. In T.E.I.C communications it is used only to the Rhodesian affiliate. More of these codes appear. Document 327 A is a letter addressed to J.L. van der Elst, top man of a Rothmans Antwerp affiliate:   

“Dear Sirs,

     On the 17th of April we wrote to Mr. F. Jansen:


     At request of JL we cabled you on the 5th:


     JL let us have the following comment on the new cross items you sent us:

     ALL FEATHERS, Excellent quality

     The various opportunities advised with your letter of March 27th have been noted and out frieinds have been advised. JL further requested that all Vodka invoices which were formerly sent to Mother in view of “BO” will in future all have to be addressed CIET . . . . . .”  

     Document 507 is a telex to SALTOBEX:

     “Fred can sell piano fifty squares soug call mxtwo gestures mog fob benson immediate pointing hollywood stop re our offer December 20 gilbert accepts remaining soug call mxtwo iugs call mxthree gestures aig iosg call mxfour gestures asg all three plus interest three months stop gilbert request option tab8/gtbo/sugu/igim end next week please cable confirm stop p0lease send us olcdcrop malawifired offers for Zaire stop faroka interested twenty tons first quality firedstrips if possible please send us sampled offers”. 

     Besides these coded messages, and the very close financial and technical links which exist between T.E.I.C. and SALTOBEX, there also appear in T.E.I.C administration numerous cost price calculations for f.o.b Beira, including railage, all in Rhodesian $. Document 474 is an example of such a calculation.

     The reference to South African grade “X40” tobacco has intrigued members of the AABN considerably. Nowhere could any reference to South African exports of this grade b found in T.E.I.C documentation. There is not a single reference to South Africa, South African grades, or even South African ports. From the telexes (114, 116) it appears that T.E.I.C. codenames the Austrian form “dogs”. In a later communication  (508) headed “Diverse Virginia Matters”, the Austrian monopoly is again discussed. There is some juggling around with the firm’s order between the grades “MR4” and “L2A” with a note that “MR4=SALTOBEX grade nr. 8606”.

     In addition to this the following telex was sent to SALTOBEX concerning the MR4, c.q. L2A grades:

     “Please point Salsul 34 groups MR1 groups MR4 vessel Novoredondo etd Benson end April to order notify address Alleghany warehouse Europe” (92)

     A few more documents on T.E.I.C.’s Southern Africa connection are of great interest as they reflect much of the political climate in Southern Africa. Document 93 is a handwritten note by the manager of T.E.I.C., Mr. Ingwerson, where he reveals that the Rhodesian connections (SALTOBEX) and Texport) are to be sold. Document 339 reveals advice from van Beek on how to cover political risks by reviving an insurance scheme “used for convoys in the 2nd World War”, referring specifically to risks involved in rail transports to Beira. This makes it clear that the industrialists regard Southern Africa as a war zone and would prefer to move political responsibility to local white interests.

     Van Beek’s communications with their Rhodesian connections similarly raise suspicions. For example, document 483 states that an overdraft made by the Rhodesian Banking Corporation in favour of the van Beek Rhodesian subsidiary Cosmos amounting to Rhodesian $ 1.030.310,70. This is reflected in weekly reports of van Beek.

     Document 312 is a report by Mr. Van Meeteren of van Beek on a trip to the Canary Islands. He states that he was appraoched with requests for Rhodesian tobacco for which there great demand and little supply.

     Traced communications between the Dutch-based importers and their Rhodesian affiliations prove that the relationship is more than a frozen one. There is proof enough in this report of the devious tactics employed to cover up current illicit trade.


     One instance has already been described of where highly suspect Rhodesian eventually ends up after the importers have passed it on. There is enough circumstantial evidence to as least cause a thorough investigation of the Austrian Tobacco Monopoly’s dealings with T.E.I.C.

     Further also touched on were the ways in which both T.E.I.C and van Beek assist in promoting Rhodesian tobacco on a worldwide scale. Documents have been mentioned that reveal the close collaboration between the U.S. Hofor and van Beek on Rhodesian trade. Similarly mention has been made of T.E.I.C.’s Rhodesian promotion with E.I.E.T. in Antwerp.

     Documentation suggests that Mitsui is involved in receiving Rhodesian tobacco via Rothmans’ VERAFUMOS connection. Document 39 states that Mitsui is in regular contact with VERFUMOS via T.E.I.C. in Amsterdam. Document 315 speaks of documents, which Mitsui sent to Amsterdam to be forwarded to SALTOBEX. Document 487 refers to discussions on commissions between Mitsui and Jansen of SALTOBEX.

     Document 337 drawn up by Mr. Sterken, the van Beek man responsible for dark and bright tobacco for the Dutch cigarette and cutting industry, with the exception of the Dutch Douwe Egberts and Philip Morris, Denmark and Finland. The document signed by him, gives the planned distribution of Rhodesian tobacco in Holland and Scandinavia for 1974/75:

Rhodesian Tobacco
Van Nelle
200 tons
Rhodesian Tobacco
Van de Bigg
10 tons
Rhodesian Tobacco
5 tons
Rhodesian Tobacco
35 tons
Rhodesian Tobacco
Heepink +Reinders
40 tons
Rhodesian Tobacco
100 tons
Rhodesian Tobacco
75 tons
Rhodesian Tobacco
80 tons
Rhodesian Tobacco
P & S
60 tons
Rhodesian Tobacco
Dutch & Danish
670 tons
Dfl 2.7 million

     Out of a total of projected sales of Mr. Sterken’s section of Dfl 4.5 million more than half is to be Rhodesian. Major Dutch consumers, Philip Morris and Douwe Egberts are not included in this plan. These firms have direct links to Rhodesia, through the mediation of T.E.I.C.  
     Document 276 is a document originating in the offices of van Beek and giving information of the current Rhodesian tobacco auctions, dated May 1 1974. Document 379 is a telex sent by T.E.I.C. to Rhodesia asking for permission to allow VERAFUMOS to start packing grades for Douwe Egberts.

     The clients mentioned here are directly linked to Rhodesian tobacco. There probably are many more who may be blending a quantity of Rhodesian tobacco into their products. Documentation suggests that this may be the case with firms who are mainly supplied by Brazil, Colombia and Paraguay.

VI.             BANKS

     When large amounts of tobacco leave Rhodesia, it stands to reason that money has to go back into the rebel colony in some way or another. This has proved to be the second area where Rhodesian smugglers have not yet developed the necessary expertise to escape exposure. In this report attention was drawn to the fact that communications are a weak point in the smuggling trade. To this must be added banking transactions.

     Probably the most sensational break-through in coping with sanctions breaking was achieved by the Sunday Times Rhodesian Iron and Steel Corporation exposures. This led to the discovery that Dutch bank, Mees & Hope was involved in channeling through to Rhodesia the sum of R$ 450.000 on behalf of Oskar Rohte Jishoot in favour of Cosmos.              

     Mees en Hope are further involved. Document 487 shows that this bank gave a guarantee of Dfl 3.772,00 to the Rhodesian Banking Corporation for van Beek. Also, the Standard and Chartered Bank in Rotterdam gave a guarantee of 500.000 Malawi Kwachas. 


     Although the feeling is that we have to wait for the Kooijmans Commission report to the Dutch government on its findings to come to better sanctions legislation, Dutch Law provides possibilities for immediate response to the present situation of smuggling Rhodesian tobacco.

     The basis of the present boycott legislation is the law of Imports and Exports of 1962, which empowers the government to take immediate steps if international legal order demands it, or when an international treaty is being abused.

     It now turns out that the United Nations Resolutions Nr. 217 of 1965, 253 of 1968 and Resolution 33 of 1973, which prescribes a complete embargo on Rhodesia are being heavily violated in the Netherlands. The urgency of maintaining these resolutions requires an immediate provision by the Dutch government. The Import and Export law provides for the possibility of making a promulgation, which can be taken within one hour. That means that from today all Southern African imports from Rhodesia can be forbidden.

     Time again it has been demonstrated how South Africa and Portugal supply the means for Rhodesian smuggling. This is the basis for the AABN plea that the Dutch government bans all imports from South Africa. Since Rhodesian tobacco comes in via Antwerp, it is imperative that this decision b extended to the Benelux as well.


     Before the beginning of the boycott against Rhodesia in 1965, Rhodesia was by far the largest tobacco producing and exporting country of Africa. It produced about 109.000 metric tons a year. That was 50 % of all African and 2 % of the total world manufacturing, or 8 % of total world tobacco trade. After the beginning of the boycott its production decreased considerably.

     According to a FAO estimation, about 62.000 tons was produced in 1972, or a 48 % reduction of 48.000 metric tons.

     So Rhodesia’s share in Africa’s tobacco production diminished accordingly to less than to less than 30 %; her world share to 1,4 % and her share on the world market to 2,6 %. In the meantime surrounding countries profited from the boycott: their manufactured tobacco export increased as follows:

South Africa

(FAO Figures in metric tons)

     This however could not compensate the loss of Rhodesian tobacco. The FAO estimate the 1972 Rhodesian export at 30.000 tons, which is less than half its production as per 1967. According to the Monthly Tobacco International (1971) this is partly sold to South Africa, either not manufactured or manufactured (for instance in the case of cigars: Count Club, Rhodesia Club, Eldorado.)

     This estimation of 30.000 is remarkable because all countries in the world, except South Africa, the Portuguese territories and Switzerland deny any Rhodesian tobacco import. Since this appears from their statistics, the conclusion is that customs documents are largely falsified. If we compare the above export figures with the information given by the custom authorities of the OECD countries then it appears as follows:

Export from:
Metric tons:
Imported OECD
+ 16.724
South Africa
+ 6.833
+ 1.544
+ 25.101
     The plus difference does not come from the official exporting countries, but probably from Rhodesia. In 1972 the imports into the OECD countries are 3 times more than is exported from Mozambique, South Africa and Angola.

     We continue to review the situation in Western Europe and the Netherlands. We compare the OECD figures of 1972 of the EEC (without England) with the total export to the OECD Countries, and Dutch import-figures as part of the total EEC import from Southern Africa:      
OECD      % import
Netherlands % import
25 %
2.219 tons           60%
70 %
6.698 tons           50%
South Africa
8.447 tons           50%
17.364 tons         50%


     The incontrovertible conclusion is that the Netherlands is by far the biggest importer of Southern African tobacco and imports half of all tobacco in the EEC.

     It is quite remarkable that the Netherlands imports three times as much tobacco from Mozambique as Mozambique exports to the world. Last year the Netherlands bought nearly, or more than the total Rhodesian crop:

From Mozambique (FAO)
Import Netherlands:
1.226 tons
1.101 tons
90 %
1.384 tons
1.571 tons
115 %
1.331 tons
931 tons
70 %
932 tons
2.291 tons
240 %
1.275 tons
5.947 tons
460 %
1.940 tons
6.698 tons
350 %


Crop Mozambique FAO
Import Holland OECD
2.396 tons
1.118 tons
50 %
4.250 tons
2.291 tons
50 %
4.500 tons
5.947 tons
130 %
7.689 tons
6.698 tons
85 %

     According to South African statistics exports to the Netherlands were 2.000 tons in 1971, while the Netherlands imported from South Africa about 8.000 tons. If we subtract the full Mozambique export we find the following figures for the Netherlands:

Import in the Netherlands
Export to the Netherlands
Mozambique    6.698 tons
1.940 tons
4.758 tons
South Africa    8.500 tons
2.000 tons
6.500 tons

           11.258 tons

     According to the OECD the Netherlands officially imported 6.000 tons from Rhodesia, 2.000 tons from South Africa, 1.000 tons from Mozambique, and 2.000 tons from other countries.

     But in 1972 the Netherlands imported nothing from Rhodesia, 8,500 tons from South Africa, 2.200 tons from Malawi and 6.700 from Mozambique.  The total import for 1965 was 11.000 tons and for 1972 this had shot up to 17.400 tons.

     This means that the import from Southern Africa increased with 50 %, although the import from the main producer (Rhodesia) was officially reduced to zero. Import from South Africa rose with 450%, while South Africa says it has remained stable over the past years. At the same time Dutch imports from Mozambique increased with about 670 %!! It seems thus quite clear that the Dutch involvement got greater, while other countries diminished their activities in Rhodesia.

     This is partly due to increasing American Virginia tobacco prices, which increased the Southern Africa share from 29 % to 38 % in shag and cigarettes. About 40% of total exported Southern Africa tobacco (38.180 tons, FAO figures) goes to the Netherlands (17.400 tons according to OECD figures).

     Dutch import-export figures for 1973 (page 3764) indicate a total import of unmanufactured tobacco at about 61.000 tons of which 27 % (about 18.000 tons) originates in Southern Africa. As 60 % of this tobacco is not exported from these countries we can calculate that 27 % of 60 %, which equals 15 % of all tobacco imported by the Netherlands comes from Rhodesia.

     This illicit trade is worth 10 million Dfl per year, or over the past three years 40 million Dfl.