By Angie Nkuna
LETSITELE – The relentless efforts by members of the South African Police Service in Limpopo to deal with the scourge of cash-in-transit heists, yielded positive results when four suspects were arrested soon after committing an armed robbery.
The G4S security officers were on Tuesday (yesterday) evening transporting money along the R71 road between Letsitele and Tarentaal just outside Tzaneen town when about ten (10) suspects traveling in two cars accosted them.
According to the information, the suspects suddenly started firing at the wheels of the security vehicle and after it came to a halt they then ordered the three security officers out at gun point before blasting it with explosives. The then fled the scene after taking an undisclosed amount of money.
L.T. Colonel Moatshe Ngoepe says the police were called, reacted swiftly and within minutes the vehicles were spotted.
“A car chase ensued along the Hoedspruit/Lydenburg road. Members of the Farm Watch joined and assisted in blocking the route. One of the vehicles was cornered next to Swadini in Hoedspruit Policing area and a shootout ensued.
“Of the five suspects who were in the car, three aged between 43 and 25 were nabbed, one managed to flee and one was fatally wounded. The three suspects and the deceased are form Burgersfort, Burgersorp outside Tzaneen, Huizeview and Bushbuckridge in Mpumalanga.
“The other vehicle was cornered next to Strydom tunnel and after a shootout, the suspects abandoned it and fled on foot. The police managed to apprehend one of them and others are still being pursued.
“The following were recovered:
• A white Mercedes Benz ML
• A black Audi
• Two (2) AK 47 rifles
• One (1) R4 rifle
• One (1) Batetta pistol
• Two (2) police bullet proof vests
• Two (2) army bullet proof vests
• One (1) hand two-way radio
• Two (2) bags of money
• The blue lights
“The arrested suspect are likely to be linked with other cash in transit heist committed in Limpopo and Mpumalanga provinces,” said Ngoepe.
The Provincial Commissioner Lieutenant General Nneke Ledwaba has commended the members for their swift response. ” This is yet another message that we are sending to other criminals out there that their days are numbered,” said General Ledwaba.
The suspected will appear in Tzaneen magistrate court soon. More arrests are expected, concludes Ngoepe.