Army-trained Cape Town jeweller fights back against armed robbers

2016-07-20 15:40

Cape Town - A Cape Town jeweller refused to go down without a fight when a gang of armed robbers opened fire on him during a heist at his business on Tuesday.

Zahoor Khan, of Andaaz Jewellers in Rylands, Athlone, escaped with a cut finger when two of the five men involved in the gunfight were shot as they tried to empty his display cabinets.

Abdul Jabbar stands inside his jewellery shop after robbers broke in. (Tammy Petersen, News24)

Khan said he was "lucky and blessed" to be alive, following the robbery at 11:00.

He had been manning the store while his business partner, Abdul Jabbar, was out running errands.

"A bakkie pulled up and I thought they were probably delivering stock to the store next door. But the next thing I know, it reversed at a speed through my front window," he said.

A second car was parked a few metres away and three men started firing at him through the glass.
Khan, who has army training, pulled out his own gun and returned fire.

"At some point I fell over, cutting my finger on a piece of glass, and the men came into the shop and started grabbing the stock. I think they thought they had shot me, but when they were inside, I started shooting at them again."

'Zahoor was like a tiger yesterday'

He hit two of the robbers, who still managed to escape with the rest of the gang.

"There was blood on the display cabinet and counter cabinet."

He said about 12 spent cartridges were in the shop.

Jabbar, who had been walking back to the Murton Street business, heard the shooting as he approached the store.

(Photo by Tammy Petersen, News24)

"I got here just as they fled. They were in and out in about 40 seconds. I just grabbed Zahoor and hugged him. It’s a miracle that he is alive."

The car the suspects fled in was later found deserted in nearby College Road.

"There was a lot of blood in it. Zahoor was like a tiger yesterday. They shouldn’t get very far, but police have told us no one has yet sought help at a hospital with bullet wounds."

Both agreed that they were "very wakey" (alert) when it came to safety.

"We have only once had an incident where a guy game in here with a fake gun. Other than that, we are super safe. We have two alarm systems, a security camera and safety gate. And we don’t allow just anyone into our shop," Jabbar said.

'We are just glad to be alive'

On Wednesday, the businessmen were overseeing repairs to the store, which they had owned for the past five years.

Seven bullet holes dotted the display cabinet and walls. All the glass counter cabinets had been shattered.

Jabbar manned the phone as dozens of calls from concerned locals came through, while Khan spoke to curious residents and businesspeople who wanted to wish the two well.

The store’s contents were not insured as it went against their faith, Jabbar said.

"We haven’t even started counting our losses. We are just glad to be alive."

Police spokesperson Captain FC Van Wyk confirmed the robbery and said no arrests had been made yet.

Read more on:    cape town  |  crime

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