The Gauteng police have recovered 29 stolen and hijacked vehicles in Johannesburg. This includes body shells of 11 luxury vehicles and a boat at a chop shop outside Lenasia.
During operation O Kae Molao on Thursday, police uncovered a chop shop in Bushkoppies, outside Lenasia, with body shells of six luxury vehicles confirmed to have been hijacked between August 2019 and July 2020 in different parts of the province.
Four other stripped vehicles and a boat and a trailer which were reportedly stolen in Florida in 2015 were also recovered.
Ten other vehicles with tampered VIN numbers were seized for investigation, said Gauteng police spokesperson Brigadier Mathapelo Peters.
She said one of the stripped luxury cars was found to have been towed away from an accident scene without the owner’s knowledge or consent.
“The provincial vehicle crime investigating unit has opened an inquiry for further investigations as no suspects have been arrested as yet,” she said.
Seven more vehicles, including a Toyota Quantum, were impounded at a roadblock on the N12 on suspicion of being stolen or hijacked.
The operations were led by Gauteng police commissioner Lieutenant-General Elias Mawela together with the MEC for Community Safety, Faith Mazibuko in Johannesburg while district commissioners led operations in the West Rand, Sedibeng, Tshwane and Ekurhuleni.
Mawela commended the success of the partnership between the police and private stakeholders in addressing the high volumes of car hijackings and theft.
“I have previously said that we need to sustain the momentum of these crackdown operations at panelbeaters or chop shops towards ultimately chocking the market for hijacking and theft of vehicles as this often comes with much violence against the victims,” said the commissioner.