Racket suspected behind vehicles theft

2015-09-17 10:56
Pietermaritzburg police spokesperson Mthokozisi Ngobese in one of the four cars recovered from Camperdown. (Ian Carbutt, The Witness)

Pietermaritzburg police spokesperson Mthokozisi Ngobese in one of the four cars recovered from Camperdown. (Ian Carbutt, The Witness)

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Pietermaritzburg - Police are investigating a car theft racket operating in Pietermaritzburg after a major bust in Camperdown on Tuesday.

Six men were arrested and five imported vehicles were recovered in two separate incidents that police believe may be linked to the same racket.

In the first incident on Tuesday, members of the Pietermaritzburg public order policing unit, tactical response team and flying squad pounced on a chop shop in the Camperdown area.

The officers were acting on information that led them to a warehouse, where they recovered four Ford bakkies and one Toyota sedan, all left-hand drive vehicles believed to have been imported.

Pietermaritzburg police spokesperson Mthokozisi Ngobese said information indicates that the recovered vehicles were bound for Pretoria when they were stolen.

“The vehicles were either stolen from the harbour where they are shipped into the country or were stolen from carrier trucks that transport the vehicles to Pretoria,” he said.

No arrests have been made in this case.

In a separate incident, which police believe may be linked to the same racket, six men were arrested in the Camperdown area after they stole a vehicle from a Prestbury home.

The men were reportedly speeding on the N3 in the stolen vehicle when the driver lost control, causing the vehicle to veer off the road and flip repeatedly before it came to a stop between Camperdown and Umlaas Road.

The men exited the vehicle and fled into a residential area nearby.

Members of the K9 unit, flying squad and Magma Security mobilised, and after an extensive search of the area, arrested all six men.

“We are investigating if there is a link between these six men and the vehicles found in the chop shop,” Ngobese said.

Magma Security director Shaheen Suleiman said he commends the relationship between the police and his members, which resulted in the arrest.

“We worked well together as a team,” Suleiman said.

Theft of motor vehicles is an increasing problem in Pietermaritzburg, but according to Ngobese, a “multidisciplinary team of officers are taking the matter seriously”.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  crime

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