Two held after shoot-out with cops

2013-10-22 00:00

EXCHANGING shots with the police as they tried to get away with their loot of orange squash, robbers turned Pietermaritzburg’s Bisley suburb into something resembling a wild west shoot-out in the early hours of yesterday morning.

The suspects are believed to be part of a larger syndicate operating in the Pietermaritzburg and Durban area who steal goods trucks.

Two members of the syndicate shot at the police and did their best to get away with their loot — boxes of Oros concentrated juice — believed to have been stolen from the Sobantu area.

A resident in Bisley, who asked not to be named for safety reasons, said the shoot-out did not last more than five minutes, but spread across four different roads. “The police were going really fast. They were really trying to catch those guys.”

She said: “There were many bullets fired and it sounded like different weapons, I don’t know if they [the suspects] were shooting back at the police.”

The shoot-out action went right past her home.

“I just woke up and went to the window to see what was going on, because I was worried that these people might just come through our wall. My husband told me that I had best step away from the window.”

Police spokesperson Thulani Zwane said they had received reports of theft and robbery in the Sobantu area and were given the descriptions of the vehicles involved, a VW Polo and an Isuzu Bakkie.

He said as the police approached the Polo, the suspect fired at the police who retaliated. The suspect managed to evade arrest.

The K9 unit, however, caught up with the Isuzu bakkie, which was being driven erratically near Cleland. The car sped off and a high-speed chase followed.

Zwane said one of the suspects in the back of the bakkie opened fire at the police and they retaliated. Around the Edendale area, he jumped out of the vehicle and fled on foot, but was arrested; the driver was wounded in the shooting and is in hospital.

Zwane said they recovered 43 cases containing six two-litre bottles of Oros concentrated juice, bolt cutters and crowbars.

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