Hostage drama at petrol station when robbers strike


Employees and customers of a gas station in Thulamahashe outside Bosbokrand were detained shortly before midnight on Saturday, when eight heavily armed men raided the gas station.

An unknown amount of cash was stolen from a safe on the premises after the robbers detonated two different devices.

According to information issued by the provincial police commissioner in Mpumalanga, the suspects stormed the gas station, held people at gunpoint and randomly fired shots with pistols and rifles. Some of the robbers then went to the safe and gained access to the cash by means of explosive devices.

“The police in Mhala realized the petrol station was under attack and responded immediately. Shots were fired by members of the police and one of the suspects was shot in the leg,” col. Police spokesperson Donald Mdhluli said. “The wounded suspect was arrested and a bag with what looks like an explosive device was found with him. The police seized the bag.”

The other suspects fled the scene in a BMW – presumably a stolen car. The stolen cash was with them in the car.

“The suspect who was arrested was taken for medical treatment and is currently being treated at a hospital under police guard,” Mdhluli said. He is likely to appear in the Mhala Regional Court soon on charges of robbery and illegal possession of explosives.

The police launched a search for the other seven suspects. An investigation team led by the provincial police commissioner was set up to track down these suspects.

Anyone with information on the whereabouts of these suspects can contact the police on 08600 10111, or share information on the My SAPS app.