Six armed robbery suspects expected in Lusikisiki Magistrates Court following fatal shootout with police

APRIL 18, 2016

Six alleged armed robbers are expected in the Lusikisiki Magistrates Court on Monday after they were arrested after a shootout with Eastern Cape police in Mbayi Locality, Mfinizweni Admin Area, near Lusikisiki on Friday, which left five of their alleged comrades dead. They face charges of robbery, possession of illegal firearms and ammunition and possession of a hijacked vehicle.

"It is alleged about 12 heavily armed suspects stormed at a local shop used as a pension paypoint and robbed the owner of an undisclosed amount of cash," said police spokesperson, Lt Colonel Mzukisi Fatyela.

"Police were alerted to the robbery and with the help of community members were located in a nearby village. When the suspects saw the police, the suspects started shooting at the police members and police retaliated."

Six suspects, aged between 23 and 35, were arrested and four 9mm pistols were recovered. Five other suspects, aged between 25 and 45, were fatally wounded. 

"The Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) has been informed. Police are on the heels of the other outstanding suspects. The vehicle the suspects used was reportedly hijacked in Hillcrest, KwaZulu-Natal," said Lt Colonel Fatyela.

Eastern Cape Provincial Commissioner, Lt General Celiwe Binta commended the community members for their alertness.

“The police in the Province are committed in clamping down on crime and criminal activities. These arrests must send a message that SAPS members in the rural areas are as vigilant and will continue to be visible and maintain zero tolerance approach in preventing crime in their policing areas,” said Lt General Binta.