Biscuit bandits busted

2015-10-13 10:45
Constable Kyle Coetze, Warrant Officer Ravi Pather, Warrant Officer Ashok Baldawo and Sergeant Chris Khanyile with some of the recovered stolen goods at Mountain Rise police station.

Constable Kyle Coetze, Warrant Officer Ravi Pather, Warrant Officer Ashok Baldawo and Sergeant Chris Khanyile with some of the recovered stolen goods at Mountain Rise police station. (Ian Carbutt)

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Pietermaritzburg - Sweet-toothed thieves almost made off with R34 000 worth of biscuits and tinned fish before they were taken down by members of the Combined Action Team (CAT) on Monday.

According to Pietermaritzburg police spokesperson Captain Gay Ebrahim, two members of the CAT were patrolling the Copesville area on Monday morning when they saw two suspicious vehicles on Copesville Drive.

When the men, who were transferring the goods from one vehicle to another were confronted, one of the vehicles sped off, leaving their accomplices behind.

Two men were arrested and the occupants of the fleeing vehicle, who were tracked, according to a police source, are expected to give statements to the police on Tuesday.

The men were caught with 228 boxes of Toppers biscuits and 156 cases of canned fish with a total estimated value of R34 000.

It is believed that one of the men, an employee at a wholesaler’s warehouse in Birmingham Road, had stolen the goods from his workplace earlier that morning and was in the process of transferring the stolen items when the arrest was made.

A police source, who asked not to be named in fear of reprisal, said one of the suspects is believed to be linked to other cases of theft of stock that happened in the past six months.

When The Witness arrived at the Mountain Rise police station, the goods were being loaded into a truck destined for the targeted wholesaler.

It took two men more than an hour to load all the stolen boxes of goods into the truck.

The police would not release the name of the wholesaler.

Ebrahim said she congratulated the speedy work of CAT in recovering the goods.

Other arrests in Pietermaritzburg

The CAT members had a busy weekend before the arrest on Monday.

Over the weekend, two arrests were made in Sobantu and Ezinketheni for murder.

In the first arrest, CAT members traced and arrested a suspect wanted for stabbing a man to death in Sobantu.

It is believed the suspect, an ex-boyfriend of a Sobantu woman, stabbed his ex-girlfriend’s current lover to death after an altercation last week.

In the second arrest, one man who is currently in hospital was arrested after a knife-fight at a tavern in Ezinkethini at the weekend.

It is believed the deceased and the suspect stabbed each other repeatedly before the suspect fled the scene.

In a separate incident, Plessislaer detectives arrested a 42-year-old man for murder on Sunday.

It is alleged that the man stabbed the 33-year-old victim to death at a shop in the Willowfontain area outside Pietermaritzburg on Saturday night.

According to Plessislaer police spokesperson Musa Ntombela, the shop owner was serving a customer when the man came to purchase matches. While the shop owner was fetching the matches, the victim was stabbed to death.

“The motive of this killing is unknown at this stage. The suspect will appear in Pietermaritzburg Magistrate Court [today],” Ntombela said.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  crime

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