Seventeen arrested for hijacking buildings across Joburg

2010-11-12 14:42

Seventeen people had been arrested for allegedly hijacking buildings across Johannesburg, Gauteng police said today.

“Warrants of arrests were issued for the suspects after they had forcefully occupied the buildings and prevented owners’ access to their properties,” said Lieutenant Colonel Lungelo Dlamini.

“The suspects will be charged with fraud, trespassing and contempt of court when they appear in the Johannesburg Magistrate’s Court on Monday.”

The police raid on the buildings began yesterday night and continued until the early hours of this morning.

Thirteen people were arrested in Banket and Kaptein streets in Hillbrow for allegedly forming a committee of 20 people and preventing the owner from accessing his building.

“The suspects ignored a court order to vacate the building and continued to receive rent from the tenants.”

Seven of the “committee” members were not found in the building during the raid and police are still searching for them.

A woman and a man were arrested in Cleveland after allegedly taking possession of a building and evicting the owner despite court orders.

In Soweto, a woman was arrested for allegedly preventing the owner of a house from occupying it after the owner bought it five years ago.

In Braamfontein, one person was arrested for allegedly hijacking buildings in Jorissen street and also for being involved in the Hillbrow building hijacking.

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