Over 100 people were taken in for questioning on Wednesday following a joint operation by the Johannesburg Metro Police Department (JMPD) and the South African Police Service (Saps) on buildings in the Johannesburg CBD including the Hillbrow area and Joubert Park.
The buildings targeted are considered to be sources of criminal activity and some are believed to be hijacked.
JMPD spokesperson Wayne Minnaar told The Citizen that the number of those taken in would increase as the raids were ongoing at the time of publication. Minnaar said at the time that three people had been arrested so far for possession of illegal ammunition and homemade rifles.
It was later confirmed that 25 people were arrested in total following the raids, which concluded a little bit after 2pm. The final number of people taken in for questioning was 124, 24 of which were reportedly illegal immigrants.
The first stop of the raid was of Vanin Court, where weapons and other goods were confiscated. These reportedly included an axe, a machete, and police issued bulletproof plates.
Shots were reportedly fired within the building.
Following this, the police made similar raids at the Stensby Hoff and Eastgate buildings.
According to the Daily Sun’s Sthembiso Lebuso, who is present at the raids, an abandoned baby was also found during the raid of one of the buildings.
— Sthembiso Lebuso (@Mbiizozo) June 12, 2019
Hijacked buildings in the Johannesburg CBD have been at the centre of much debate on social media and elsewhere following attacks that were reportedly carried out on several police officials who raided buildings and confiscated counterfeit goods in Hillbrow over the weekend.
(Compiled by Daniel Friedman. Pictures by Nigel Sibanda)
UPDATE: This story was updated to reflect the final number of those arrested and taken in for questioning in the raid. 9:50, June 13.