LIMPOPO police have arrested four cash-in transit robbers in Hoedspruit last week, after they pulled off the second cash delivery robbery in the province in less than two weeks.
Spokesperson Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo says the G4S security guards were transporting money along the R71 road between Letsitele and Tarentaal outside Tzaneen when about 10 suspects travelling in two cars attacked them.
The suspects allegedly started spraying the wheels of the security vehicle with gunfire and after it came to a stop, they ordered the three security guards out at gunpoint before blasting it with explosives.
“The suspects fled the scene after taking an undisclosed amount of money when the police were called in and reacted swiftly. Within minutes the vehicles were spotted,” said Mojapelo.
Mojapelo says that the suspects were arrested after one of their cars was cornered next to Swadini in Hoedspruit. A high speed car chase ensued.
“Members of the Farm Watch along the Hoedspruit/ Ladenburg road joined in a car chase and assisted in blocking the route. A shootout ensued between the police and the suspects when we cornered one of their vehicles.”
He said that of the five suspects, who were aged between 25 and 43, one was fatally wounded and the other three were nabbed. One of them managed to flee on foot.
“The other vehicle was cornered next to Strijdom Tunnel and after a shootout the suspects abandoned it and fled on foot when police managed to apprehend one of them while others were still being pursued,” he added.
The following weapons and cars were recovered at the scene, among others:
- A white Mercedes Benz ML,
- A black Audi
- Two AK 47 rifles
- One R4 rifle
- A pistol
- Two police bullet proof vests
- Two army bullet proof vests
- Blue lights
- Two bags of money
- A two way radio
Mojapelo believes that two of the suspects are likely to be involved in other cash in transit heists committed in Limpopo and Mpumalanga.
The country has been marred by several cash in transit heists in recent weeks.
Last week, African Times reported that the Hawks arrested seven suspects in Seshego and Groblersdal in connection with a cash-in transit heist where the suspects allegedly robbed an SBV vehicle on the Matlala road outside Polokwane.
The suspects have since appeared at the Seshego magistrate court on charges of robbery and illegal possession of fire arms and ammunition.
Limpopo Provincial Police Commissioner Nneke Ledwaba has commended the members of the police for their swift response.
“This is yet another message that we are sending to other criminals out there that their days are numbered,” said Ledwaba.
Mojapelo said that the suspects arrested at the scene will appear at the Tzaneen magistrate court in due cause and more arrests were expected.