Seven suspected transit robbers were arrested on Friday near the Eastgate shopping center on the East Rand.
Col. Katlego Mogale, spokesperson for the Hawks, says the authorities initially received information that the group of suspects would have followed a man after he visited a bank.
A multidisciplinary team consisting of the police, the Falcons and a helicopter from the Gauteng traffic police was deployed and began to monitor the group’s movements. Then came the information that the group had just been involved in an armed robbery in Primrose, Germiston.
The authorities responded to the information and spotted the group of suspects’ vehicles – a silver Mercedes-Benz CLA, a maroon Ford Fiesta and a white BMW 1 series – near the Eastgate shopping centre.
That’s when the team struck.
Seven suspects between the ages of 31 and 48 years old were arrested. Among other things, the three cars, two unlicensed firearms, ammunition, mobile phones and gloves were also seized.
A preliminary investigation now indicates that the BMW is connected to a case that was filed in Linden in August. The suspects are also wanted in connection with a robbery and transit robbery committed last month in Cosmo City.
The suspects are now expected to appear in the Johannesburg Magistrate’s Court on Monday on charges of armed robbery and possession of a stolen vehicle.
Mogale says the possibility that the suspects are connected to other crimes in Gauteng cannot be ruled out.