A police officer was wounded in the ensuing shootout, while the suspects fled the scene after abandoning their vehicles.
A 31-YEAR-old man is scheduled to appear before the high court in Mpumalanga and the Mhala Magistrate’s Court on Monday and Wednesday respectively after being arrested for attempted robbery.
The man, who was already wanted by police for another crime, was arrested after being involved in a daring robbery attempt on April 1 in which the suspects deliberately rammed into a police escort vehicle, Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (the Hawks) Mpumalanga spokeswoman Captain Dineo Sekgotodi said.
“The suspect was allegedly linked to a failed cash-in-transit heist (when) a G4S armoured vehicle was travelling from Dwarsloop to Thulamahashe escorted by the police,” Sekgotodi said in a statement.
The police vehicle escorting the cash delivery van was allegedly rammed by a gold Mercedes Benz which was accompanied by a silver Subaru.
“The police returned fire in the ensuing shootout and the suspects fled the scene on foot abandoning their getaway vehicles. Along the way they reportedly hijacked two other vehicles as they fled,” said Sekgotodi.
The Mercedes Benz and the Subaru were seized by police for further investigation, while the armoured G4S vehicle proceeded without further attacks.
A police officer was wounded in the gun battle and taken for medical treatment.
A preliminary investigation by the Hawks’ serious organised crime team revealed that the Subaru had been stolen in Brooklyn in Mpumalanga last December while the Mercedes Benz was stolen in Bushbuckridge in February.
Sekgotodi said additional investigations into the arrested man linked him to other cases including that of car hijacking committed as far back as 2017.
“The suspect had [previously] been released on bail and a warrant of arrest was issued against him after he absconded a high court appearance on the vehicle hijacking cases,” she said.
– African News Agency (ANA)