Four police officers, stationed at Inanda SAPS, along with a security guard are facing charges of kidnapping, extortion, pointing of a firearm, theft of a cellphone and assault GBH, following an incident in Springfield, last week.
A report issued by provincial police stated that on July 25 at about 10pm, two victims, aged 28 and 36, were on Inanda Road when they were allegedly kidnapped by the five suspects, who were travelling in a vehicle.
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“At gunpoint, they were forced into the boot of the vehicle,” said provincial police spokeswoman, Cpt Nqobile Gwala, adding that the victims were taken to a truck yard on Peters Road where the suspects demanded an amount of R50, 000 from them.
The victims were severely assaulted after they failed to produce the money.
“One of the victims was released and instructed to raise the cash. Fortunately, the victim who was released, contacted Greenwood Park police officers, who immediately responded. The victim pointed out the suspects to police, who prevented them from making good on an attempt to flee,” she added.
A vehicle was intercepted and the suspects pointed out where the second victim was being held.
The victims were transported to hospital due to the severe injuries they sustained during the assault.
“Investigations revealed that the suspects are three policemen and a policewoman stationed at Inanda SAPS. The fifth suspect appeared to be a security guard. Three state-issued firearms were confiscated from the arrested suspects,” she explained.
The complainant’s cellphone was also found in their possession.
A state vehicle, that was used in the commission of the crime, was found parked at a service station while another vehicle used by the suspects was also seized for further investigation. The suspects are due to appear in the Durban Magistrates Court soon.
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“This arrest serves as a stern warning to those, who are engaging in criminal activities and hiding behind the SAPS badge, that their time is near,” Cpt Gwala stated.
Disciplinary investigations will be initiated to investigate the conduct of the suspects and they can be dismissed from the SAPS before the criminal investigations are finalised, she noted. She concluded, “We once again applaud members of the public for bringing such errant behaviour by police officers to our attention so that they can be dealt with. Police officers are also subjected to the same laws as ordinary citizens and therefore, such criminal behaviour will never be condoned.”
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