Four 'cops' hijack Uber vehicle in Cape Town

2016-08-22 19:28
(File, Eric Risberg, AP)

(File, Eric Risberg, AP)

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Cape Town – Four men hijacked an Uber vehicle that was transporting a passenger to a Cape Town bank to deposit cash at the weekend, Western Cape police said on Monday.

The incident took place in Table View shortly before noon on Saturday.

Some Facebook users who live in the vicinity questioned whether the driver had tipped the men off.

Uber reiterated to News24 on Monday that it screened "driver-partners" who used its application.

It referred to the police investigation that was underway.

"The driver is a verified partner of Uber and was providing services on the Uber platform during the time of the incident," a company statement read.

"All drivers undergo a criminal background screening via a third party supplier who leads the industry."

'Crime a reality in Cape Town'

Police spokesperson Captain FC van Wyk said four unidentified men, one with a firearm, arrived in their own vehicle and held up the Uber taxi, a white VW Polo.

The men apparently introduced themselves as policemen.

They then robbed the passenger of an undisclosed amount of cash and fled in both vehicles.

Van Wyk said no shots were fired and no one was injured.

"The victims were offered victim support at the scene by SAPS employees."

Uber said it was relieved that no one was injured.

"We take any incidents of this nature very seriously. We have been in touch with the rider and driver to offer our support, and an investigation is underway," it said.

"Crime is an unfortunate reality in Cape Town. Uber looks forward to helping make the city safer."

Committed to users' safety

It said it was committed to app users’ safety and strived to constantly improve its safety features.

Early in August, a Gauteng woman was injured when she jumped from a moving Uber taxi, after a man said to be hiding in the back seat, tried to strangle her, Netwerk24 reported.

News24 reported that a woman was kidnapped and raped after getting into what she thought was an Uber taxi in Fourways in July.

The woman apparently got into a car, thinking it was an Uber, outside Montecasino. Two men were allegedly lying down in the back of the car.

Uber urged passengers to use app information to verify their driver and vehicle before getting into a vehicle.

Passengers were asked to share their expected time of arrival and location with a loved one, charge their phone so they could track their ride, and not unnecessarily share their details, as it had an anonymous contact system.

Read more on:    uber  |  cape town  |  crime

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