Nine people were arrested in Mahikeng in North West province on Friday in the midst of planning a cash-in-transit robbery by the Tactical Response Team acting on a tip-off from Crime Intelligence, police said.
“The Tactical Response Team arrested nine suspects and recovered six firearms including one AK-47 rifle and handguns, several rounds of ammunition, and four luxury vehicles including a black Jeep, an Audi Q5, a Mercedes ML and a Ford Ranger,” said police spokesperson Brigadier Vishnu Naidoo.
The team acted on information that a group was gathered at a house in Riviera Park, Mahikeng where they were planning a heist, Naidoo said.
“While at the house arresting six suspects, four more suspects arrived,” he said. “They noticed the presence of the police and fled resulting in a high-speed car chase. During the chase, police fired shots at the suspect vehicle forcing it to a halt. Three suspects were arrested while the fourth escaped.”
The arrest came as ten other alleged cash-in-transit robbers appeared in the Molopo magistrate’s court in Mmabatho on Friday to apply for bail.
Xolile Qoma, 42, Zwelebanzi Mbango, 35, Joseph Thilo, 40, Lebogang Morwe, 29, Ofentse Mokheai, 29, Mosimanegape Molefe, 39, Israel Mokaila, 32, Taka Mpofu, 35, Joel Moepeng, 42, and Monnapule Godfrey Phale, 42, made off with an undisclosed amount of money after they allegedly bombed an armoured vehicle and stripped the security guards of three firearms in Matlhonyane outside Mahikeng on September 30.