- Police Minister Bheki Cele said on Wednesday that foreign criminals are involved in many of the cash-in-transit heists spreading terror in South Africa
- Cele stated that many arrests have been made and that a big boss has been put behind bars
- The number of cash-in-transit heists in South Africa has more than doubled
On Wednesday Police Minister Bheki Cele stated that foreign nationals were among the suspects responsible for the cash-in-transit heists in South Africa.
There has been a cash-in-transit every day, on average in 2018. During the last 6 months the number of attacks was 159.
Since last year, the rate of cash-in-transit heists have more than doubled.
Fortunately, a total of 13 arrests has been made in the last day or so. Though that is not much, at least something is happening.
According to Cele, the number of foreign criminals are becoming more, and they are all from the The Southern African Development Community region - the SADC is a regional economic community.
The countries in this community are Zimbabwe, Malawi, Republic of Congo, Namibia, Mauritius, Angola, Zambia, Botswana, Democratic Republic of Congo, Mozambique, Lesotho, Swaziland, Seychelles, Tanzania, Madagascar and South Africa.
However, the statement on its own says very little and may simply fuel xenophobic attitudes.
Briefly.co.za gathered that some of the arrested suspects are from Botswana. According to Cele some nationalities that were never considered violent threats are now involved in the cash-in-transit heists.
According to a report by IOL News, some of the criminals are also from Mozambique and Zimbabwe. Cele stated that in the past South Africa and Zimbabwe have worked together to fight crime in both countries.
But Cele was afraid of his statements leading to xenophobic attacks, so he quickly stated that it is not new to blame crime in South Africa on foreigners. He insisted that there should be evidence when people want to point fingers.
Cele is convinced that the South African Police Force is making steadfast progress in the fight against cash-in-transit heists.
The Police Minister also said that the police have arrested 13 suspects as well as a kingpin in the syndicate linked to cash-in-transit heists.
The issue of criminals getting bail and then continuing criminal activities is a serious one.
Cele has stated that the SAPS is aware of the bail issue and working on it.
According to reports, 244 of the 295 reported cash-in-transit heists were investigated. Since investigations started, 130 arrests have been made but only 44 criminals have been convicted.
Cele is confident that the South African Police Force would return order to South Africa. He promised that the country would soon be as it was in 2010 - when cash-in-transit heists didn't happen.
According to police commissioner Sitole, there are in fact inside jobs occurring inside the police, leading to criminals getting their hands on police weapons. But he also insisted that arrests have been made in known cases.
The exact number or cash that has been stolen is uncertain, the loss in vehicles are at an astounding R67 million this year alone.
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