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Alleged cop killer and Le Bon Bakery robber remains in custody

Feb 15, 2019
Alleged cop killer and Le Bon Bakery robber remains in custody

The bail application of the man arrested for allegedly gunning down Port Elizabeth K9 unit officer, Constable Dwane Kemp, during an armed robbery and shootout at the Le Bon Bakery, in Central, Port Elizabeth, in January was again postponed on Friday.

The 24-year-old suspect, who cannot be named, was detained by the Hawks’ Serious organised Investigation unit at his parent’s residence in Algoa Park, Port Elizabeth after a six-day manhunt. 

He is again expected in the Port Elizabeth Magistrate's court on the 22nd of February.

Shootout between police and robbers at Le Bon Bakery Port Elizabeth

"He is accused of being part of group that fatally shot Constable Dwane Kemp (31) following a shoot out between police and armed robbers.

"Members of the Port Elizabeth Flying Squad received a complaint of an armed robbery in progress at a bakery on the corner of Parliament and Rose Street," said Hawks spokesperson, Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi then.

"When police arrived at the scene shots were fired and officers returned fire."

Four of the suspects, who were in the shop, were shot dead during the exchange of gunfire. 

"The fifth suspect managed to escape."

Brig Mlaudzi said that three firearms were recovered at the scene and have been sent to ballistics for testing to establish if they have been used in other similar crimes.

"Constable Kemp died in hospital, just hours after the deadly confrontation and a manhunt was launched for the outstanding suspect, which led to his eventual arrest on Sunday," he added.

The suspect appeared at the New Law courts in Port Elizabeth at the end of January fcing five charges of murder, attempted murder, business robbery, possession of firearm without a licence, and possession of ammunition without a licence to possess a firearm capable of discharging such ammunition.

Arrest of Le Bon Bakery robbery suspect welcomed

The National Head of the Hawks, Lieutenant General Lebeya, has hailed the success as a significant breakthrough in dealing with those who are bent to killing law enforcement officials in the country.

“The suspect has committed murder on a law enforcement official, which falls under Schedule 6 that has impact on bail application," he said.

"Over and above, the suspect together with deceased accomplices, are to be charged with murder and robbery  that falls under Part I of Schedule 2, read with section 51(1) of the Criminal Law Amendment Act 105 of 1997 which attract a minimum sentence of life imprisonment.”

The arrest comes after Minister of Police Bheki Cele made a call on Saturday at the funeral service of the late Constable Kemp that he wanted the fifth suspect arrested.

“The long arm of the law knows no boundaries no matter where you hide we will find you. A job well done to the Hawks and men and woman in blue on the swift action in ensuring that the perpetrator is brought to book, within the 72 hour activation plan” said Minister Cele.

Cele further made a call to all police officers to use tools given to them responsibly and decisively when executing their duties and to do so within the ambit of the law.

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