Concern over car hijackings

2016-07-06 06:00
’n Vermeende motorkaper lê gisteroggend langs die pad in Uitenhageweg, Port Elizabeth, nadat hy in die enkel gewond is toe polisiebeamptes hom en die bestuurder van ’n gekaapte VW Polo voorgekeer het. Hy en die bestuurder is in hegtenis geneem. Foto: WERNER HILLS

’n Vermeende motorkaper lê gisteroggend langs die pad in Uitenhageweg, Port Elizabeth, nadat hy in die enkel gewond is toe polisiebeamptes hom en die bestuurder van ’n gekaapte VW Polo voorgekeer het. Hy en die bestuurder is in hegtenis geneem. Foto: WERNER HILLS

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SHORTLY after police arrested two suspected hijackers on Friday last week, another car was hijacked - apparently the 200th in the past two months in the Bay.

The police anti-hijacking taskteam was following up information on Friday morning after the umpteenth VW Polo car was hijacked in Kamesh, Uitenhage, last month.

The grey Polo was hijacked on Thursday at 8pm.

Sgt Majola Nkohli, a police spokesperson, said the owner of the car was ambushed by the hijackers in the driveway at a house and threatened with a gun.

The police anti-hijacking task team discovered that the Polo was on its way to Port Elizabeth, Captain André Beetge, a police spokesperson, said.

The car was spotted in Uitenhage Road near Algoa Park. The driver of the hijacked car tried to flee from police. “When police officers forced the hijacked car to a halt, the two occupants of the car jumped out and tried to flee. The passenger was shot in his right ankle,” said Beetge.

The driver, a 31-year-old man and 26-year-old passenger were arrested on the scene. Although no firearm was found in their possession, the passenger had a knife in his possession.

According to Beetge the possibility exists that the two alleged hijackers are part of a syndicate that has hijacked VW Polos in Port Elizabeth and Uitenhage in the last few months.

“The possibility is being considered, especially since they were caught with a hijacked VW Polo.”

This model has been the target of hijackers the last few months. A reliable police source revealed that Polos are popular with hijackers because there are so many of these cars on the road and they can easily be sold.

On Friday morning yet another Polo was hijacked. According to the source, it was the 200th car, out of mostly Polos, which was seized in the past two months.

Allegedly, the 41-year-old driver of the Polo, a VW employee, left a Spar in Port Elizabeth and shortly before he could get the car into reverse, was stopped by two armed men. The driver of the car and his wife were forced out of the car and the suspects fled in the Polo.

Meanwhile Beetge said police were concerned about the growing number of Polos being hijacked. For this exact reason, officials from all over the metro have gathered to form the metro’s anti-hijacking taskteam.

“The task force focuses on cases of hijacking of cars and delivery vehicles, such as those that transport food and cigarettes.”

Although Beetge may not mention statistics, he said that the hijacking of bread delivery vehicles, especially in the Motherwell area, had already diminished after the task force was appointed about a month ago.

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