Thupeyo Muleya, Beitbridge Bureau
SIX Zimbabweans have been arrested along with four South African men as they planned to rob a cooking oil producing factory in Johannesburg, Gauteng province last Friday.
The 10-man gang was rounded up following a shoot-out with the Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department (JMPD)
Undercover Reaction Unit working with the SAPS Crime Intelligence Unit.
The suspects have been charged for attempted murder, conspiracy to commit a business robbery, impersonating
Department of Labour officials, contravention the Immigration Act, fraud and possession of illegal firearms.
They were arrested in the Eikenhof area, south of Johannesburg. Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department spokesperson, Mr Xolani Fihla confirmed the incident yesterday.
He said the suspects were detained at Mondeor SAPS on multiple charges and they are due to appear in court soon.
“Our officers had received information regarding a syndicate intending to commit a business robbery at Golden Fry Factory in Eikenhof, which produces cooking oil,” he said.
“According to reports received, the group intended to travel in four vehicles which consisted of two Volkswagen Polos, a white Ford Ranger and a white Toyota Quantum, and they were allegedly armed.”
Mr Fihla said the operational team proceeded to the said location where the suspects had been strategically placed.
Whilst monitoring, he said the officers spotted two white Volkswagen Polos branded as those belonging to the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) and Department of Labour on the doors.
He added that one of the Volkswagen Polos had a Gauteng Province Government number plate affixed to it.
“They also spotted a black BMW 1 series and a blue Toyota Corolla,” said Mr Fihla.
“The team noticed the vehicles approaching the factory as they kept watching”.
He said a shootout broke out as the officers intercepted the suspects.
The official said fortunately, none was injured during the shootout he said.
The suspects were found with four firearms.
“Ten male suspects, including four South African and six Zimbabwean nationals were arrested and they were found with four firearms in their possession.
“Additionally, reflector jackets and cards from the Department of Labour were discovered on the suspects,” added Mr Fihla. [email protected]