Gold Gang strikes again

2018-02-21 14:52
Roobers' getaway car left in Table Mountain.

Roobers' getaway car left in Table Mountain. (File)

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The “Gold Gang” appears to have struck yet again.

This time their target was a home in the Bombay Heights area­ of Northdale, the sixth attack by armed robbers who use the same method in just two weeks.

A family of three, including a 65-year-old woman, said they were held at gunpoint by two men who demanded gold and cash on Monday night.

The house was relatively unsecure because it is undergoing major renovations, and the family said the alarm system was dis­abled at the time.

A 19-year-old family member told The Witness that the incident occurred just a few minutes after his uncle, who also lives in the house, returned home after giving a lift to some of the builders working on the property.

“We’re doing lots of construction and it was quite hot inside so we had the door open. Two men came in and held my uncle and I at gunpoint. My grandmother [the 65-year-old woman] was on the phone and they told her to hang up and they took the phone.”

He said a third man had taken the keys of a car parked at the home and waited in the car for the other two men.

“They took us all into one room and told us to lie down. My granny said she can’t lie down because she has medical problems but she said she’ll stand and be quiet. We said they must take what they want and leave.”

He said the two men ransacked the house, taking cell phones, imitation jewellery, some belongings and about R10 000 in cash, which was set aside for paying the builders.

“They told us, ‘If you don’t keep quiet, you’ll get shot’,” he said.

He said when another relative came to visit, the robbers fled. “The car was waiting to take them. My uncle screamed to our neighbours to call police.”

He said the car, which was a courtesy car, was recovered near Table Mountain. It is currently impounded.

The 65-year-old woman told The Witness that the men held her at gunpoint and made her remove the bangles she was wearing. “The bangles were imitation but because they were shiny, they probably thought they were real.”

She said: “My body is shaking. They were saying ‘I’ll shoot you’. I just thank God they didn’t hurt us. I told my son afterwards we can recover our money and phones, but not our lives.”

Ward 30 councillor Renesha Jugmohan said she fears the gang is now targeting the Bombay Heights area as the Orient Heights community, which had previously been hit, was now on high alert.

She advised residents to report any suspicious behaviour to police.

Police said the robbers made off with about R58 000 in belongings. A spokesperson appealed to the community to be vigilant at all times, and asked that residents ensure their properties are secured.

On Monday, The Witness reported that nervous Northern area residents have been galvanised into action, banding together and joining crime Whats­App groups in response to the recent spate of armed robberies.

Residents also said they were working with private security companies and police to try and stop the gang.

Read more on:    house robberies  |  pietermaritzburg

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