South Africa

Police warn of smash-and-grab attacks around Cape Town International Airport

Police warn of smash-and-grab attacks around Cape Town International Airport
Cape Town - Nyanga police have warned motorists to beware of smash-and-grab attacks when they are waiting at red traffic lights on Borcherds Quarry Road close to Cape Town International Airport.

This comes after two such incidents were caught on camera over the past fortnight.

Nyanga police communications officer Captain Ntomboxolo Sitshitshi said a 17-year-old suspect was arrested last week after being found in possession of a dangerous weapon and identified as one of the the people caught on the footage.

“Two other suspects, who are also known for smash and grabs, were also arrested for the possession of dangerous weapons, and they too will be checked to see if they are linked to the recent smash and grabs,” she said.

Nyanga Community Policing Forum’s (CPF) Martin Makhasi said robberies in the Borcherds Quarry area were an ongoing challenge. The forum had previously pleaded with the City of Cape Town to provide law enforcement officers, but to no avail, and the situation was escalating.

Makhasi said the influx of people into the area, and the mushrooming of informal settlements was a contributing factor to the rising crime in the area.

He said the forum had recently formed a multi-stakeholders agency, comprising the police, CPFs, and government departments to look at the safety of informal settlements.

“Within Nyanga police precinct we have about 17 informal settlements. Our biggest challenge is almost all of them are not serviced by the municipality, and that makes it difficult for police to do effective policing, which then makes them havens for criminals and criminal activities,” Makhasi said.

Sitshitshi cautioned motorists to be vigilant at all times when approaching the Borcherds Quarry area.

She said motorists should maintain a safe following distance behind the vehicle in front of them, keep their valuables in their car boot, and not travel with possessions visible on their vehicle's back or passenger seats.


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Cape Argus