Different task teams and tracing units of the South African Police Service in Limpopo conducted break through investigations during the past few days which resulted in the arrests of several suspects for various crimes in the province.
Three of the six suspects who allegedly robbed garages at Mokopane, Polokwane and Jane Furse, were nabbed while the other three suspects are still on the run.
In the early hours of Tuesday 2015-04-21 four petrol stations experiences a rude awakening when they were allegedly attacked in a series of incidents that started at Mokopane to Polokwane at two garages and ultimately at Jane Furse. Safes in all the filling stations were blasted and an undiscloused amount of cash was taken in the process. Preliminary investigations showed that at all the four scenes, a vehicle with six occupants were involved.
The Provincial Commissioner of Limpopo, Lt Gen Fannie Masemola, immediately ordered the establishment of the task team to investigate the cases. The task team consisting of a team of Detectives, through intelligence gathering, started the investigation and a massive search for the suspects was embarked upon.
The hard work put together by the team, and with the help of community, yielded positive results when three suspects were arrested with the following confiscations a getaway vehicle reportedly hijacked in Motetema seven fire arms, namely four pistols, three riffles and cash. A search for the remaining three suspects is still on.
The Provincial Commissioner applauded the sterling work done by the task team, who meticulously and promptly apprehended the suspects. He further assured the community that criminal activities will never be tolerated in this Province. The three suspects will appear before Polokwane Magistrate Court on charges of business robbery later this week.
Meanwhile, a 23-year-old suspect who was arrested last year on a charge of rape, has also been confirmed a serial rapist after DNA tests positively connected him to 37 cases in the Bolobedu area. The suspect was arrested during May of 2014, when he broke into the house of his last victim, overpowered and raped her. The victim screamed during the ordeal and the suspect fled. However, her father woke and gave chase and shot the suspect in the leg and called the Police. He was arrested and after thorough investigations and DNA tests were done by members of the Tzaneen Family Violence and Child Protection Services, the results confirmed that he was involved in 37 cases of rape.
His reign of terror in the Bolobedu area started in 2013. His modus operandi was to overpower women while they were walking alone, or breaking into their homes and raping them. The suspect appeared in the Tzaneen Magistrates’ Court on Friday and is due back in court on 30 April. His identity will not be revealed yet as an identification parade must still be conducted.
Several suspected rhino poachers were also apprehended in separate incidents across the province as well as the Kruger National Park. At Groblers Bridge, two suspects who were attempting to sell a rhino horn, as well as six diamonds, were arrested after information received was followed up by members of the Lephalale Stock Theft Unit. The two suspects, who originates from Zimbabwe, but works in Botswana, allegedly entered the country illegally in an attempt to sell the items, when they were apprehended and arrested. The origin of the items is being investigated and the value is still to be determined. They are due to appear in the Mokopane Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday.
At Lulekani, four suspected rhino poachers were arrested in three separate incidents by members of the National Intervention Unit assisted by members from the rhino poaching task team after intelligence was received and followed up. Four hunting rifles, ammunition, axes, knives, cell phones and cash were found in their possession.
The suspects appeared in the Phalaborwa Magistrates’ Court. Samuel Nxolani Mabunda (31) and Climate Mathebula (27) were granted R1500 each and Chester Malungane (28) granted R1000 bail and both cases postponed to 05 June 2015 for further investigation. Eric Mandlazi (35) was remanded in custody to 30 April 2015 for bail application.
In the Kruger National Park, close to the Phalaborwa gate, visitors to the park alerted rangers at the gate after they saw two suspects crossing a tar road on foot. A helicopter and the police were summoned. Rangers followed the tracks in the bush and found the suspects hiding in thick bush. They confiscated a 458 hunting rifle, ammunition a knife, two cell phones as well as four rhino horns. Two of the horns were relatively fresh, while the other two were old. The exact scene where the alleged shooting took place is still being traced. The suspects are due to appear in the Phalaborwa Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday.
The Provincial Commissioner of the SAPS in Limpopo, Lt Gen Masemola applauded all the members in the different teams for their hard work, dedication and commitment to bring the suspects to book, but also praised and thanked members of the community who supplied the information that led to the arrests of the suspects. “These successes reiterates the fact that when members of the community and the Police work together, crime can be eradicated and criminals removed from the streets to make communities safer,” he said.
Source : South African Police Service