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Police arrest 3 suspects linked to Northwest abduction syndicate

Police arrested three people.

Gallo Images / Die Burger / Jaco Marais

  • Police said the syndicate targeted hitchhikers, stole their belongings and held them for a ransom.
  • Police have contacted the syndicate in at least 12 different cases in the province.
  • Police said miners were the main targets of the syndicate.

Northwestern police have arrested three suspects suspected of being linked to a kidnapping syndicate targeting hitchhikers and detained them for ransom.

In a statement on Sunday, police said they believe the arrests “broke its back,” which appears to be a syndicate involved in at least 12 kidnapping cases in the Dr. Kenneth Kaunda district.

Police spokesman Colonel Athlenda Mathe said police had spotted the suspects along the R502 road connecting Potchefstroom and Orkney on Friday night.

“Two foreign nationals between the ages of 24 and 37 were found traveling in a vehicle that matched the description of the vehicle they were looking for when an employee of a post office was abducted last Wednesday,” Mathe said.

During the search of the vehicle, police suspected several objects belonging to another victim who was abducted on Thursday.

“In this case, a ransom was demanded from the victim’s family. The team immediately sent a search team to rescue the victim, who was found in an stadium in Orkney.”

Police later arrested another 57-year-old foreign national at an undisclosed address. Mathe said information on a number of different addresses was examined.

“At this address, police have seized two other vehicles allegedly used in other kidnapping cases, as well as sixteen cell phones that are believed to belong to the victims in these cases.”

How it works

Police said the syndicate was mostly based in Potchefstroom, Klerksdorp, Orkney and surrounding areas, targeting hitchhiking members of the population.

Their main targets were miners, Mathe said.

“The syndicate would entice unsuspecting victims from hitchhiking places on the pretext of transporting them to various destinations. The victims will then be robbed of their personal belongings and demand a ransom from their families for a safe return.”

Mathe said in an analysis of this modus operandi, police linked the syndicate with the abduction of 12 other people and a Post Office employee who was released after the ransom was paid.

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In a further 12 cases, victims were also abducted from their personal belongings and demanded a ransom for their safe return.

“It cannot be ruled out that more arrests will be made and these suspects will be linked to more than one case,” Mathe said.

The outgoing National Police Commissioner, General Khehla Sitole, praised the team’s efforts, led by Lieutenant General Sello Kwena, Northwest Police Chief.

“There is a need for a rapid and cooperative approach by members of a multidisciplinary team consisting of members of the Northwest Law Enforcement Intelligence, Murder and Robbery Unit, Provincial Drugs Group and visible law enforcement teams at the Orkney and Khuma Police Departments. praise, ”Sitole said.

“We will continue to mobilize resources to increase the capacity of our specialized units to improve law enforcement interventions to keep pace with ever-changing crime trends.”

The suspects are due to appear before the Orkney Magistrate’s Court on Monday for kidnapping, extortion, armed robbery and alleged possession of stolen goods.

Police arrest 3 suspects linked to Northwest abduction syndicate

Source link Police arrest 3 suspects linked to Northwest abduction syndicate

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