Ricochet News

Over 1 000 arrested in Eastern Cape for various crimes over the past week alone

JUNE 13, 2017
Over 1 000 arrested in Eastern Cape for various crimes over the past week alone

More than  1 000 suspects were arrested in the Eastern Cape over the past week as police intensify efforts to curb the scourge of trio crimes - which include car hijacking, robberies at residential premises as well as robberies at business premises, in the province. 14 of the arrests happened over the weekend.

"With these arrests, 17 firearms, 107 rounds of ammunition and 82 dangerous weapons including knives and pangas were recovered. 64 livestock and 15 vehicles were also recovered," said police spokesperson, Col Sibongile Soci.

"Drugs including 1 085 madrax tablets and 69 kg of dagga were also recovered during the Back to Basics policing operations.'

Weekend operations

He said that the 14 suspects were arrested in support of the National Trio Crimes Action Plan formulated by SAPS management earlier this year.

• A navy blue Toyota Avanza was hijacked at Empilweni Clinic in Buffalo Flats, East London by three armed suspects on 10 June 2017. The vehicle was circulated and while travelling along Settlers way, East London police with K9 and Flying Squad members in hot pursuit, the driver lost control and the vehicle collided with a tow truck. Three suspects, aged between 32 and 36 years were arrested. Two of the suspects were identified as those who escaped from Zwelitsha Magistrates Court on 24 May 2017. One (1) 9mm Norinco pistol and R5 rounds was recovered.  The suspects will appear in the East London Magistrates Court soon on charges of escaping from lawful custody, hijacking and possession of unlicensed firearm and ammunition.

• Swift police action led to the arrest of five suspects following an armed robbery at one of the service stations in Queenstown on 10 June 2017 at about 10:00. It alleged that four armed suspects entered the service station and demanded money from the cashier. They fled the scene with an undisclosed amount of cash in a blue Toyota Avanza. The matter was reported to the police and whistle was blown to all members on the ground and the five (5) suspects were arrested five suspect and the getaway vehicle was recovered. Upon the circulating the vehicle, it was discovered that it belongs to a police constable attached to Queenstown SAPS. An investigation is underway on the involvement of the constable in the robbery. All the suspects will appear in the Queenstown Magistrates Court soon on charges of armed robbery and possession of unlicensed firearm and ammunition.

• Kamesh SAPS members worked tirelessly to apprehend suspects allegedly responsible for a murder. According to police information, at about 00:55 on 11 June 2017, a 20-year-old victim and a friend were walking home through an open field next to Kamesh Road when they were confronted by a group of males who allegedly robbed them of their belongings. The suspects fatally wounded the 20-year-old before fleeing.  Kamesh detectives worked throughout the morning in an attempt to trace and apprehend the suspects and their efforts paid off when they arrested six suspects, aged between 18 and 33-years in Joe Slovo at about 11:15. The suspects will appear in the Uitenhage Magistrates Court on 13 June 2017 on charges of murder and robbery.

• An alert service station attendant noticed something suspicious at a shop next to the service station on 11 June 2017 and informed the police who were patrolling the area. Police immediately followed up the information and discovered groceries next to the road at a culvert. Further investigation led to the arrest of a 24 year-old suspect hiding not far away from where groceries was. Arrests are imminent for the remaining suspects. The arrested suspect will appear in the Lady Grey Magistrates Court soon on business burglary charges.  

The Eastern Cape Provincial Commissioner, Lieutenant Gen Liziwe Ntshinga commended the Operational Command Centres (OCC's) at Clusters for the arrests.

“When operational policing services are directed and coordinated, arrests are effected to prevent and combat crime in areas where crime is infested.

"The main focus of OCCs is to clamp down on drug dealing, violent crime and the proliferation of unlicensed firearms throughout the Province. This well-coordinated manner in which crime is tackled, is in line with the Back to Basics policing approach,” she said.