W Cape cops zooming in on mall robbers

2014-10-26 16:54

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Cape Town - Western Cape police say they have identified a number of suspects behind a spate of robberies at shopping malls.  

However, the public's help is needed to make sure that they are caught as soon as possible, said spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Andrè Traut said on Sunday. 

He said in a statement Western Cape police had arrested 20 suspects linked to cellphone and jewellery store heists since the beginning of April. Another four were arrested near a cellphone shop on Friday.

Traut said they also confiscated five firearms and the possibility is being investigated that the gang might be involved in other armed robberies. 

He said various initiatives and tactics are applied to deal with the situation in the best possible manner ahead of the festive season.

"We are continuously engaging with management at shopping malls and Business Against Crime to share information and identify risk factors." 

Traut said the maintenance of camera equipment and standardisation of surveillance cameras were essential.

He said the police in the Western Cape had established a dedicated team of experts comprising detectives, crime intelligence officials and tactical visible police members to deal with these robberies and related crimes.

"The team is in pursuit of identified perpetrators of theses robberies and all efforts are co-ordinated on both a provincial and national level." 

 Traut said investigations suggest that the perpetrators behind these robberies have previously had a brush with the law and have since migrated to executing high-value item robberies which are considered of less risk compared to cash in transit and ATM robberies.

Read more on:    cape town  |  crime

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