Former police officers amongst 8 arrested for kidnapping and terrorising community

The Free State Provincial Organized Crime Unit, in collaboration with Crime Intelligence, the Welkom Anti-Gang Unit, and the Welkom Tactical Response Team, successfully arrested eight suspects in the North West Province.

On Friday, April 19, 2024, at around 09:00, the multi-disciplinary team responded to intelligence-led information about eight wanted suspects involved in a kidnapping and extortion case on the R30 between Vierfontein and Bothaville on March 1, 2023.

The suspects lured the victim and his friend by posing as police officials, kidnapped them, and coerced them into electronically transferring approximately R200,000 to different bank accounts under the suspects’ instructions.

The suspects, aged between 33 and 53 years old, included two former police officials aged 38 and 45. They were swiftly arrested by the team as they were about to enter the Wolmaranstad court.

The team also seized two vehicles allegedly used in the commission of the crimes: a white Toyota Corolla and a metallic brown VW Polo.

The victims were threatened with arrest, violence, and were forced to comply. The arrested suspects are believed to be part of a group terrorizing communities in the Free State and North West provinces using the same modus operandi.

“I would like to commend the joint effort by the team in making sure that the victims of these ruthless criminal conducts find closure.” Said the Provincial Commissioner, Lt Gen Baile Motswenyane.

The suspects are scheduled to appear in the Viljoenskroon Magistrate’s Court on Monday, April 22, 2024, to face charges of kidnapping and extortion. Additional charges may be added as investigations continue.


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