POTCHEFSTROOM – A team effort by Hartbeespoortdam Detectives, Visible Policing and the Brits Trio Task Team resulted in the arrest of seven suspects over the weekend. Following the arrest, the suspects were linked to various cases of hijacking, murder, unlawful possession of firearms and ammunition and theft committed in Hartbeespoortdam, Muldersdrift and Attridgeville.
It is alleged that in some of the incidents, the suspects used ladies to lure potential victims by pretending to be hitch-hikers, prostitutes or damsels in distress. Upon stopping, male suspects would suddenly emerge from the bushes, then overpower victims and hijack their vehicles. In most instances, motorists were also robbed of their valuables.
In one of the cases, reported in the afternoon of Friday, 3 January 2020, a 44-year-old victim was travelling in his Toyota Corolla Quest on the R512, close to Hartbeespoortdam when another Toyota Conquest suddenly stopped right in front of his vehicle. It was at that point that six suspects of which three were armed with firearms, overpowered and pointed him with firearms. The victim was tied-up and robbed of his personal belongings and the vehicle. The suspects drove off, leaving him in the bushes. The victim managed to walk to the road where he was helped by a passer-by.
In another incident in the morning of Friday, 2 October 2020, a 44-year-old man allegedly stopped his vehicle to assist a lady next to the road, opposite an Estate in Dr Wild Fig Street, Hartbeespoortdam. Furthermore suspects stormed out of the bushes, pointed him with firearms and robbed him of his personal belongings.
Following an intensive investigation, four suspects, Abrahim Thobejane (37), Gaven Khumalo (39), Edgar Maluleka (40) and Koos Maite (37) were arrested and appeared in the Brits Magistrates’ Court on Monday, 23 November 2020, for car hijacking and aggravated robbery. They will remain in custody until their next court appearance on Tuesday, 1 December 2020.
Three more suspects are expected to appear in the Attridgeville and Krugersdorp Magistrate’s Courts respectively on charges of hijacking, murder and unlawful possession of firearms and ammunition.
The Provincial Commissioner of North West, Lieutenant General Sello Kwena lauded police in the Bojanala Platinum Sub-District 1 (Brits) for working tirelessly to ensure that the suspects are apprehended and illegal firearms removed from the wrong hands. He reiterated that police will continue to work hard to ensure that perpetrators are brought to book.