Cash warning to businesses

2017-05-03 13:45
Armed gang wait until closing time before taking cash from tills.

Armed gang wait until closing time before taking cash from tills. (File)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Police are on the hunt for six armed robbers who walked out of a Pietermaritzburg business with an undisclosed amount of money in a brazen robbery.

The robbery has prompted security experts and police to once again warn city businesses that hold large sums of cash on their premises, to take additional security measures, especially after public holidays and long weekends.

The warning was issued on Tuesday while Pietermaritzburg police were searching for an armed gang who targeted the Jwayelani Butchery in the city CBD on Monday night.

Three store managers and three security guards from the Selgro Centre butchery were held at gunpoint on Monday evening shortly before they locked the butchery’s doors at 7 pm.

Jwayelani regional manager Wesley Davis said six men clad in balaclavas and carrying firearms stormed into the store while managers cashed the tills.

“They pointed the guns at the staff and demanded the money.

“They left with an undisclosed amount of money and even grabbed the CCTV cameras on their way out,” Davis said.

He said although the store managers and security guards were unharmed “it was a terrifying experience”.

The entire incident lasted about 15 minutes and police are still in search of the suspects.

uMgungundlovu South cluster police spokesperson Sergeant Mthokozisi Ngobese said police were investigating a case of armed robbery.

Ngobese warned business owners to be extra vigilant, especially after public holidays.

“Businesses do not have the opportunity to bank their takings due to the public holidays and most businesses will have extra income over the long weekends.

“We want business owners to be extra vigilant during this time, take extra safety precautions and alert the police immediately should anything go wrong so we can act immediately,” Ngobese said.

In another public holiday robbery in Cape Town on Monday, a security guard and a robber were killed when a robbery turned into a hostage situation at the Shoprite at the Nyanga Junction mall.

Pietermaritzburg Chamber of Business CEO Melanie Veness said that business owners should always be aware that there are “extreme risks” attached to holding large amounts of cash on site.

“Businesses that operate over weekends and on public holidays, and that take in large amounts of cash, are particularly vulnerable when we have long weekends such as the past weekend,” she said.

“In 70% of instances like this the information provided can be traced directly back to staff,” said Veness, who recommended that businesses try to limit the number of employees that handle cash.

“Businesses must also ensure that they do not do routine banking. It isn’t possible to bank the cash as often as one would like to and criminals are aware that you are, in all likelihood, holding excess cash,” she said.

The South African Banking Risk Information Centre (Sabric) warned that all business owners should never openly display their money in the tills or while depositing it.

Sabric CEO Kalyani Pillay said businesses should alternate the days and times on which they deposit cash.

“Business owners should also refrain from giving wages to their contract or casual labourers in full view of the public. Rather make use of wage accounts that can be provided by the bank,” she said.

Pillay shared other tips for business owners to use such as, “Avoid carrying money bags, briefcases or openly displaying your deposit receipt book.

“Ensure that your banking pattern is not easily recognisable or detected.

“If the amount of cash you are regularly depositing is increasing as your business grows, consider using the services of a cash management company,” she said.


Read more on:    pietermaritzburg

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
Watch: Investing in the future through child development

An investment of R32-million into 11 early childhood development centres is changing the future for children in the Northern Cape.

/Africa
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.