Under-pressure Western Cape police arrest 4 for hijacking

2017-10-04 18:00
SA police. (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

SA police. (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

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WATCH: We have made 45 arrests already in Philippi - Mbalula

2017-10-04 11:55

Police Minister Fikile Mbalula disclosed on Tuesday that at least 45 people had been arrested in connection with the 'vigilante' murders in Philippi East, including a handful of kingpins. Watch. WATCH

Cape Town - Four people have been arrested in the Nyanga policing area, known as South Africa's "crime capital", for hijacking trucks and private vehicles, Western Cape police said on Wednesday.

Spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Andre Traut said they were apprehended in New Crossroads, Gugulethu and Bishop Lavis, west of Cape Town, and were linked to six hijacking cases during August and September.

During their spree, they allegedly made off with a bakkie load of vegetables and furniture delivery trucks and, in Browns Farm, near Gugulethu, they hijacked private cars.

The suspects are between the ages of 27 and 30.

During the police operation, conducted by the Provincial Hijacking Unit and the Nyanga cluster Tracing Team, officials seized a toy gun, a wardrobe, and a double bed.

"The one arrested in the Bishop Lavis case is appearing in court today [Wednesday] and the other three are appearing in the Athlone Magistrate's Court for hijacking," said Traut.

WATCH: We have made 45 arrests already in Philippi - Mbalula

Western Cape police have been under pressure to bring crime under control, and Police Minister Fikile Mbalula has made several trips to the province - where he has spoken to the communities of Elsies River, Nyanga and Philippi East - along with his deputy Bongani Mkongi, and provincial police commissioner Lieutenant General Khombinkosi Jula.

On Saturday, residents of Philippi East stormed the police station, demanding action from the police after 18 people were recently killed in the nearby Marikana informal settlement. They complained that the police were not coming out when they reported crime and were not helping them.

Mbalula visited the area on Tuesday and announced that the station commander of Philippi East had been changed, with Colonel Bongani Mtakati taking over for a fresh start.

READ: Mbalula announces change of guard after Philippi shootings

Five crime "kingpins" were also arrested in connection with crime in the area, according to Mbalula, and another 45 nabbed for various other infractions as a result of a beefed up police presence in the area.

Read more on:    fikile mbalula  |  cape town  |  crime

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