Cops nab gangsters in high-speed chase

1087051298Johannesburg – Police on Sunday nabbed four men who are allegedly part of a bigger gang that has been terrorising communities in Joburg and Pretoria.

The men, identified by the police as Zimbabweans, were allegedly involved in violent crimes, including murder, attempted murder and house and business robberies.

One of the men arrested was allegedly involved in a robbery at a jewellery store at the Mall of the South last week.

According to Gauteng police spokesman Lieutenant-Colonel Lungelo Dlamini, three of the suspects were arrested in Pretoria North after police received information about an imminent business robbery in the area.

“The suspects were spotted travelling in a Toyota Rav 4. When police approached them during a stop-and-search operation, their vehicle sped off. A chase ensued and the suspect’s vehicle collided with another vehicle from the opposite direction at the R101 in Pretoria North.

“One of the suspects was injured and taken to hospital under police guard,” he said.

Three of the men are linked to a string of crimes, including a murder and house robbery in Sinoville, Pretoria North, last week.

“A man was killed after being shot several times through a kitchen door. The men got into the house and then ransacked it. Several goods, including a plasma screen television and laptop, were stolen,” Dlamini said.

The fourth man was apprehended on Sunday in Rosettenville, Joburg, after a tip-off from the public.

“He was part of a gang that confronted the employees at the Mall of the South where jewellery worth thousands of rand was stolen.

“The suspect was the one who fired several shots randomly while they were fleeing from the scene,” Dlamini said.

On further investigation, police recovered four handguns, 10 plasma screen televisions, gate remotes, cellphones, a Rica machine, cellphone starter packs, balaclavas, a music system and a Toyota Rev 4, which was used as their getaway vehicle. Police were also questioning other suspects who they believed could be members of the gang.

The four men are expected to appear today in the Joburg Magistrate’s Court and Pretoria North Magistrate’s Court.

“We are appealing to all business people to report any suspicious people and vehicles and to upgrade security as the festive season approaches,” Dlamini said.

He warned that during the festive season, several crimes, especially robberies and theft, increased.

“Police are also embarking on festive season operations to make sure that the citizens feel safe,” Dlamini added.

The Star

SAPS hunts Rhodes Park gang of 12

a34rhodes1Cleveland SAPS is investigating two counts of murder and one count of rape following Saturday’s shocking attack involving a gang of 12 men at Rhodes Park in Kensington.

The EXPRESS reported last night (read here) that at 6.45pm on Saturday, two couples were at the park when they were attacked by a group of 12 suspects.

Since the EXPRESS’ initial reports (read here) last night, more details have been provided by the SAPS indicating one woman was raped by one man.

“Two men, accompanied by their girlfriends, were walking at the park, when they were approached by the group of men,” said Constable Mpho Mashakane from Cleveland SAPS.

One man carried a firearm and a second man carried a knife.

The two men, who had visited the park with their girlfriends, were tied up with their clothes and thrown into the lake.

“One of the suspects raped one female victim. The bodies of the two male victims, aged 25 and 32, were later found by police divers,” said Constable Mashakane.

Community members have since taken to social media platforms expressing shock and calling on council for safer public parks.

Be wary of unscrupulous recruiters

1610234726People seeking employment shouldn’t be charged a fee by agencies

JOB-SEEKERS have been warned to stay away from recruitment agencies that demand registration fees or payment with promises of getting them jobs, because what they are doing is illegal.

This comes after two desperate job-seekers were left crushed, allegedly by staff at the Lorraine Hospitality and Recruitment Centre, an agency which operates at Ottawa Mall in downtown Joburg.

The job-seekers were told to report to the recruitment agency the following day, when they would be taken to their workplace to report for duty as their applications had been successful.

However, upon arrival, they were allegedly told to pay R600 registration fees first.

When they said they didn’t have the money, they were allegedly rudely told to leave and to return only when they had the money.

They had to return home, humiliated with the excitement of getting a job dashed.

“I asked them to place me and said I would pay them after my first salary, but they refused. It was at that point I realised it was a scam,” said Omphemetse Mphehlo.

An unemployed Mphehlo saw an advert for a chef on Gumtree and immediately sent an SMS to a number on the advert. Just like Nonhlanhla Zwane, who had applied for a call centre job, they were invited for an interview the following day.

While Zwane


in Soweto, Mphehlo had to find the money to travel from his home in Mahikeng, North West, to Joburg. There, they were “interviewed” and later told they had got the jobs.

Mphehlo, who has a certificate in professional cookery and food preparation, was told that he would start as a chef at the Gallagher Convention Centre the following day.

Excited, the 37-year-old packed his bag and bid his family and neighbours goodbye and made his way to Joburg to begin a new life.
“I even packed my recipe books so that I could show my new employers what I am capable of,” he said.

However, when he arrived at the office that day, everything had changed.

He said be begged them to give him until month-end to pay, as he didn’t have money, but they wouldn’t hear of it.

“I was so disappointed and didn’t know how I was going to break the news to my family. It’s like I am a fool,” he said, close to tears.

Zwane also left disappointed after failing to pay the R600. While there, the pair met Freddy Zulu, Thapelo Mofokeng and Tebello Mokoena, who were also there for “interviews”. They also stopped a desperate Nosipho Masumpa, who was about to pay the R600 to secure a domestic worker position. The Star spoke to the agency’s Vanessa Siki, who confirmed that they charge a registration fee and that if someone does not have it, the agency can deduct it from their first salary. Siki also said she had connections at the Gallagher Convention Centre, Emperors Palace and the Sandton Convention Centre.

“That’s where I send my people. They will test you, and if you pass you’re in,” she said.

The Star checked with Val Wilson at the Gallagher Convention Centre, who confirmed that they didn’t have a chef ’s position at the moment, and even if there were one, they wouldn’t use a recruitment agency from Joburg but rather make use of the services of an “international guy” for that.

Wilson said the recruitment agency was a scam because recruiters can’t ask for money from a job-seeker.

Roly Boardman of the Federation of African Professional Staffing Organisations (Apso) said making job-seekers pay for jobs was illegal.

Boardman, who is chairman of ethics at Apso, said that in the past, a recruitment agency used to get a percentage from a job-seeker’s first salary after helping them secure a job,

But the Employment Services Act had done away with that practice because recruitment agencies get paid by the companies that contract them to help them find the best candidate for a particular position, he said.

“A legitimate recruitment agency would never ask you for money. If they do, they are doing something illegal and should be reported to the police and the Department of Labour.”

Boardman also warned people to be wary of international recruiters.

By Botho Molosankwe –
The Star 22/09/15 Early Edition

KZN woman sends burglar flying

421524895815 October 2015 at 5:50pm

Durban – A Waterfall woman used a burglar guard to fend off a housebreaker, whacking him until he fell out of the window.

In the past few months, Durban women have taken the fight to burglars.

Renette Edwards used a samurai sword in Morningside, and Jennifer Harris of Glenwood pushed a burglar off a ledge from her second-floor flat.

This time, Michele Mayer struck the burglar several times with the burglar guard.

Mayer, 49, and her daughter Chelsea, 10, were asleep in their bedroom. She heard two bangs and awoke with a shock.

She grabbed her glasses and noticed the curtain was moving.

Initially she thought the wind had blown the window open. She then caught the shape of a person under the curtain and instinct kicked in.

“A screw was holding the burglar guard on to the window frame, which delayed him. I started screaming and lunged at the curtain. He was trying to push me in. I was pushing him out. We were both on either side of the burglar guard. The screw holding it came loose.

“The next moment I was holding the burglar guard in my hand. I went wild. I whacked him until he fell out of the window. I mustered up some supernatural strength,” Mayer said. Chelsea sat up in bed, shocked, watching her mother fight. To add to their nightmare, at the same time, they heard the window break in the lounge.

A second burglar was trying to get in through the lounge window.

He put his hand through and took a vase and computer monitor from the table. The men also took a bicycle from outside the house and skipped over a fence.

Although the incident happened late on Sunday night, the family are still shaken by the ordeal and sleep together in one room.

Mayer and Chelsea are undergoing trauma counselling.

Mayer is nursing bruises to her legs and arms, and cuts on her palm.

Her husband, Mervyn, was not home at the time. He urged people to take a stand and fight crime.

“If she stood back, what would have happened next? They could have been harmed. There is a list of possible scenarios.

“Chelsea is still in fear. She won’t go to the next room without us being there. We refuse to live in fear. This is our home,” he said.

Hillcrest police are investigating a case of housebreaking and theft.

Daily News

#WitsFeesMustFall protest to continue

411775787October 15 2015 at 07:22am


Johannesburg – Students at Wits University said on Thursday morning that protests sparked by the institution’s announcement that fees were being hiked would continue.

However, university authorities said security had been beefed up at all gates and police had been called in to prevent disruptions of lectures, which were expected to resume.

Angry students shut down the campus on Wednesday and declared its grounds a “no in, no out” zone in protest.

Classes and other academic activities were suspended as a crowd of students moved through lecture halls chanting songs condemning the increase.

They said the hike wouldprevent students who came from lower-income families from accessing higher education.

“This is not a protest – it’s a shutdown,” said Mcebo Dlamini, the former student representative council (SRC) president, addressing hundreds of students in a hall outside the student enrolment centre.

Wits students closed access to all the universitys entrances to object to an increase in fees. Picture: Bhekikhaya Mabaso THE STAR

The students had blocked all entrances and exits.

“We’re going to shut down Wits until management comes and says there’s no fee increase,” said Dlamini.

Nompendulo Mkhatshwa, the president-elect of the SRC, said the management should remember that the institution belonged to the students.

The crowd grew bigger as more students joined in.

The morning had started with fewer than 100 students guarding the gates. The group began winding through buildings on the west side of campus before they burst into lecture halls, singing and stomping as they disrupted lectures.

Some students ignored the procession of demonstrators but others joined in.

By 11.30am, the crowd had swelled to well over 500 people. Some of Wits’s staff also joined in, singing, chanting and dancing their way through the campus.

A woman hoisted a placard with the message “Being poor cost me my future”.

A few of the buildings bore the marks of the protest. One lectern in a hallway had been tagged “Do not submit. Revolt”, and someone had painted “Lynch Habib” on the side of College House. Professor Adam Habib is the vice-chancellor.

University spokesman Shirona Patel said no one was injured.

“Aside from one altercation and the vandalisation of some classes overnight, no violence has been reported,” she said, adding that the protest was illegal as it violated the rules.

“While the university recognises that students have a right to protest, this cannot happen at the expense of the rights of students and staff members to learn and work in a safe environment,” Patel said.

Wits chief financial officer Linda Jarvis said the increase in fees was necessary because of the cost of buying stationery items overseas and academic staff salary increases.

The university is increasing fees by 10.5 percent and registration fees by 6 percent.

Wits isn’t the only institution increasing its fees by double digits. The University of Cape Town is also raising its fees – by 10.3 percent.

UCT spokeswoman Pat Lucas said the university council would propose a 13 percent increase in student financial aid.

Higher Education spokesman Khaye Nkwanyana agreed with the students. “Institutions of higher learning sometimes raise their fees in ways that are exorbitant and serve as an exclusion mechanism for many students. This also means that students who are in the institutions default and are financially excluded,” he said.

The Star and ANA


Pedestrian bridge across M1 Grayston collapses

The pedestrian bridge under construction across the M1 highway in Sandton has collapsed, falling on at least one car. Paramedics have confirmed that at least two people have died.

The collapse of the bridge happened as the City of Johannesburg promoted the Ecomobility World Festival which encouraged motorists to park their cars, cycle, walk and use public transport to get around Sandton.

A motorist told Eyewitness News that he saw the structure crash onto the car behind him.

According to an eNCA report a minibus taxi was underneath it.

A photograph shows the red structure blocking both the north and south-bound lanes of the highway.

Netcare 911 spokesman Chris Botha told News24 paramedics were on the scene, and would provide information soon.


Police hunt for female rapists


October 13 2015 at 08:03pm
By ANA Reporter

Kagisho police near Kimberley have appealed to the public to assist in identifying the women following the alleged incident last month.

Police spokesperson Lieutenant Olebogeng Tawana said that on 25 September, women thought to be “aged between 20 and 30, dark in complexion, 1.6 and 1.7 metre tall, were allegedly driving in a silver hatched back VW Polo with Limpopo registration number plates, in the area of Retswelele in Galeshewe”.

Tawana said: “The women introduced themselves as Barbara, Rolufu and Daphney. It is alleged that they stopped near a house in Retswelele, asking for a direction to the Kimberley city centre.

“A 32-year-old man willingly directed them in the direction to drive to the Kimberley city centre. However, they deceptively asked the man to accompany them until into the city centre, as they will give him a taxi fare back to his house in Retswelele where they had picked him up.

While they were driving towards the city centre, they offered the man a glass of wine, which he is suspicious that the women might have spiked it. He subsequently passed out after drinking it.

“The next moment when he woke up he found himself in bed at a guesthouse in Lichtenburg, in North- West Province. He was offered tablets to drink by the women, and afterwards they took turns to rape him repeatedly. The man alleged that the women kept him in a guesthouse for three days and raped him.”

Tawana called on anyone with information about the women on the identikit, to contact the investigating officer Sergeant Daniel Satisfied at 053 8076 161 or 083 9400 503.

The investigation continues.



JOHANNESBURG – Police have arrested a 38-year-old man in Lenasia, South of Johannesburg, for his alleged involvement in mob justice in the area, which resulted in two deaths.

It’s understood the community in Lawley apprehended and assaulted two men on Saturday night, who they believed had been involved in a number of house robberies in the area.

One of the men was killed on the scene, while the other later died in a local hospital.

The police’s Tsekiso Mofokeng says, “The community of Lenasia caught two people who they believe were suspects for housebreaking. The two were beaten by community members and unfortunately both of them passed on. One suspect was arrested and charged with murder.”

(Edited by Masechaba Sefularo)



Mia Lindeque150612Bluelight-jpg

JOHANNESBURG – A 38-year-old man who was attacked allegedly by three young men while riding his bicycle in Pretoria believes the assault was racially motivated.

The three 19-year-old men have been released on a warning after they briefly appeared in the Pretoria North Magistrates Court on charges of assault as well as reckless and negligent driving.

Simba Masvino sustained severe head injuries as a result of being dragged alongside the group’s vehicle outside the Nkwe Resort on Sunday.

Masvino has told Eyewitness News the three young men told him after the attack that they “only wanted to scare him”.

He says this is proof that the attack was racially motivated.

“If he wanted to scare me he should have stopped, maybe to do something. Maybe hit me and then run away. I also don’t understand their aim now.”

He claims the vehicle the group used to drag him beside was speeding and they refused to stop.

Police say the suspects will be back in court next month, while investigators gather more evidence.

Masvino says the families of the three men have offered to pay his medical bills and to take him to a private doctor for further examination.

He says they have also tried to convince him to withdraw the case against the trio but he refuses to do so.

“Some just say, ‘Simba please withdraw the case’ or something like that and I just said ‘no’.”

Masvino’s face is severely swollen and he’s had to have several stitches.

He will now have to return to a specialist next week as doctors suspect he could also have a fractured skull.

(Edited by Masechaba Sefularo)

12 escape from two different police cells

Limpopo – Twelve awaiting trial prisoners escaped from holding cells at two different Limpopo police stations over the weekend, police said on Monday.

“Six suspects escaped from the Mecklenburg police station and the other six managed to escape from the Tubatse police cells,” said spokeswoman Colonel Ronel Otto.

“At both stations, the suspects escaped after they managed to saw through the mesh wires of the roof of the exercise room.”

She said the prisoners were detained for crimes ranging from rape, robbery, housebreaking, theft and public violence.

Police have launched a manhunt for the prisoners.

Otto said: “Provincial commissioner, General Mashilo, has ordered a full investigation into the two incidents, and stressed that if (police) members were found to have been either involved, or having not followed the standard procedures on the detention of suspects, harsh disciplinary steps will be taken.”