Spotlight on cash-in-transit heists – 12 arrested so far

Northview High School principal Christopher Mathebula

 

Cash-in-transit heists are in the spotlight throughout the country as numerous incidents have taken place over the last few months.

One such incident, an Olifantsfontein cash-in-transit heist near the R21, resulted in the death of Northview High School principal Christopher Mathebula (47) on 1 June. He died after he was caught by a stray bullet during a heist by a group of unknown men.

National police spokesperson Brigadier Vishnu Naidoo has confirmed the incident and revealed that no arrests have been made. However, he said 12 arrests have been made regarding other heists.

Six people were arrested for a cash-in-transit heist that took place in Witbank, Mpumalanga on 4 June and six were arrested for another heist that took place in Tzaneen, Limpopo on 5 June.

“The six suspects linked to the Witbank heist were arrested on their way to KwaZulu-Natal, driving in three vehicles. An undisclosed number of firearms were found and confiscated during the arrest,” said Naidoo.

With regards to the heist in Tzaneen, Naidoo said, “Immediately after the robbery took place, the community and police locked down the area and crowded it so suspects would have little room to escape.

This action resulted in one suspect being killed, three wounded and one arrested when they came face-to-face with police.

“Two of the other suspects were arrested in the morning, which then brought the count to seven suspects.”

According to police, some of the 12 arrested suspects and the one deceased, have been linked to other crimes, therefore police are still investigating if the same group of people was involved in the Olifansfontien heist.

“Mathebula was the only person who was fatally wounded on 1 June, but another young man was also injured and is currently recovering in hospital.

“Minister of Police Bheki Cele visited the Mathebula family to give his condolences for their loss,” said Naidoo.

Due to a spree of cash-in-transit heists and other crimes, Cele has announced a high-visibility and intelligence-driven campaign to tackle aggravated robberies.

More updates will follow as the story unfolds.

 

Also check out:

#ICYMI: Northview High School principal killed in cash-in-transit heist

  AUTHOR
Welisa Nene
Journalist

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