Suspected cop killer arrested in Limpopo

Sergeant Pieter de Lange (left).
Sergeant Pieter de Lange (left).
Twitter

A 31-year-old man suspected of killing a policeman was arrested in Limpopo on Friday night, police said. The man is suspected of shooting dead Sergeant Pieter de Lange, 30, from Westenburg SAPS, who was killed by suspected drug dealers in November last year.

The arrest was made by a multi-disciplinary team comprising the Hawks' Serious Organised Crime Investigation unit, Limpopo Crime Intelligence, Mankweng SAPS Tracing Team and the Westenburg SAPS detectives.

Police spokesperson, Captain Matimba Maluleke, said the suspect will appear in the Seshego Magistrate's Court on Monday.

"During the suspect's arrest at his home in Seshego on Friday evening, members confiscated an unlicensed firearm and a motor vehicle suspectedly stolen," said Maluleke in a statement.

He said that De Lange was gunned down in November last year during an encounter with suspected drug dealers, who were travelling in two vehicles at a notorious crime hotspot in Ladanna, Polokwane.

On that fateful day, De Lange was on duty doing observations with regard to drug dealings in the area when he was gunned down whilst fighting back. He died on the way to hospital.

The police investigation started in earnest, and the team recovered a stolen BMW not far from the crime scene, believed to have been used by assailants on the same day.

"After two months of labouring, a suspect will be charged with murder and possession of an unlicensed firearm when he appears in court. The search for the other outstanding criminals is still ongoing," Maluleke said.

Three men between the ages of 32 and 40, who are believed to be part of a syndicate behind a spate of armed robberies in Groblersdal were also arrested on Friday evening by the same integrated team.

According to Maluleke, one of the suspects was picked up in Mankweng and two were arrested in Botlokwa, where an unlicensed firearm was also recovered from one of them.

"The three suspects are expected to appear at Mankweng and Morebeng Magistrate's Courts respectively on Monday and will face charges relating to armed robberies and possession of an unlicensed firearm," Maluleke said.

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