On Sunday 2015-01-18 at about 12:30 a 65-year-old farmer headed home to his farm after a day at church in Bothaville. On arrival at his farm, he was surprised by 6 unknown suspects carrying a firearm demanding the keys to his safe. The suspects tied the victim’s hands with a wire and searched for the safe.
While the suspects were busy searching for the farmer’s safe, the unsuspecting famer’s wife (60 years) arrived with another vehicle and she was also overpowered. Her hands were tied with wire and the suspects attempted to rape her. The suspects fled the scene with the farmer’s Ford Bantam, 5 pistols and ammunition, jewelery and an undisclosed amount of cash.
Before the suspects could exit the farm road, the farmer managed to untie himself and contacted the neighbouring farmers and Bothaville police station. One of the farm watch vehicles patrolling spotted the Ford Bantam and the suspects abandoned the vehicle and ran into the corn fields. The whole area was cordoned off by the community farm watch and the police with a police helicopter hovering and searching for the perpetrators.
A quick response from the police units, farm watch plane that was working nearby as well as the police chopper, resulted in the arrest of the 6 suspects from Zimbabwe and the recovery of the stolen properties.
Free State Police Commissioner Lt. General Thabethe Mpembe commended Police members and the farming community for the quick and swift response: “It shows that the rural safety plan is reaping positive results. We appreciate that no life was lost during the attack and that all the suspects were apprehended,”.
All the suspects aged between 19 and 34 who are Zimbabwe Nationals will appear in the Bothaville Magistrate Court soon on charges of House Robbery and attempted rape. Two of the suspects were staying in the Bothaville area.
Source : South African Police Service