Crusaders 'terror plot': Another man arrested in Cape Town after explosives, devices found

2019-12-06 10:27
The Hawks confiscated an illegal gun and explosives. (Hawks)

The Hawks confiscated an illegal gun and explosives. (Hawks)

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Another suspected member of the National Christian Resistance Movement (NCRM), also known as the "Crusaders", has been arrested - this time in Cape Town, the Hawks said on Friday.

A team descended on the man's business premises in Kuils River on Thursday and arrested him for the illegal possession of a firearm, explosives and explosive devices, said Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi.

"The suspect is believed to have links with the other four suspects who have already been arrested and charged for alleged terrorist activities," he said.

READ | Terrorism accused, Crusaders leader to spend Christmas behind bars

The 46-year-old man was expected to appear in the Blue Downs Magistrate's Court later on Friday.

Harry Knoesen, the self-professed leader of the NCRM, was arrested at his Mpumalanga home on terrorism-related charges last week.

Possible explosives factory

This followed a two-year Hawks investigation into an alleged terrorist plot "apparently co-ordinated by the group to target national key points, shopping malls and informal settlements," Mulaudzi said.

Knoesen, 60, is a former national defence force member and retired pastor. He was apprehended and charged for terrorism-related activities in contravention of the Protection of Constitutional Democracy against Terrorism and Related Activities Act as well as the unlawful possession of a firearm and ammunition.

A search at his other residence in the Eastern Cape, according to the Hawks, uncovered a possible explosives factory, electronic devices and documents as well an unlicensed firearm and ammunition that were seized for further analysis.

His arrest was soon followed by three others, including that of Riana Heymans, in Kliprivier, Johannesburg.

"Various firearms and ammunition, documents and other items were confiscated by the Criminal Record Centre (CRC) for further probing," Mulaudzi said.

Heyman, 54, together with brothers Eric Abrams, 55, and Errol Abrams, 49, appeared briefly with Knoesen in the Middelburg Magistrate's Court on Monday.

They will remain in police custody until their next court appearance on January 12, 2020.

Mulaudzi said their investigation continued.

Read more on:    cape town  |  crime
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