Bloemfontein – A Free State policeman was wounded during a shootout with a group of suspected ATM bombers at the Mandela Park mall in Phuthaditjhaba early on Friday, the Hawks said.
A group of 10 men took a security guard hostage at the QwaQwa radio station, near the Standard Bank ATM in the mall, said Captain S’fiso Nyakane.
One of the radio station hosts activated a switch and the drama was broadcast live. When the station manager went to see what was happening, he was also held hostage.
"When police officers arrived at the scene, a shootout ensued between the officers and suspects. One police official was shot in the leg," he said.
The constable was rushed to hospital. AK-47 and 9mm cartridges were recovered on the scene.
The suspects fled in a police vehicle and the station manager’s car. Both were later found abandoned.
The gang had allegedly intended to blow open the Standard Bank ATM.
No arrests had yet been made yet.