The National Traffic Anti-Corruption Unit (NTACU) has slammed the brakes on a traffic and police officers’ syndicate, which has allegedly been hijacking trucks on Gauteng freeways.
In a statement, the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) said this came after three men were arrested in Johannesburg on Tuesday, shortly after hijacking a truck.
“The three — a member of the Ekurhuleni Metro Police Department’s VIP Protection Unit, a member of the South African Police Flying Squad and a civilian — were spotted driving a vehicle fitted with false number plates in the Johannesburg central business district,” RTMC spokesperson Simon Zwane said in a statement.
He said the number plates raised the suspicion of an alert member of the NTACU, a division of the RTMC.
“He kept the vehicle under surveillance while he called for back-up from members of the SAPS Crime Intelligence and the Gauteng Highway Patrol,” said Zwane.
The joint team confronted the suspects and found them in possession of State issued firearms.
Zwane said upon further investigation, it was discovered that the suspects had earlier allegedly dropped off a fully loaded truck at Strydom Park in Randburg.
“It is believed that they are part of a syndicate that has been hijacking trucks on the R59, N3, Kliprivier and other routes in Gauteng,” Zwane said.
The investigation continues and more arrests can be expected. The suspects are expected to appear in court soon.
RTMC chief executive, Advocate Makhosini Msibi, applauded the members for the arrests.
“This is a major breakthrough in the fight against truck hijackings in Gauteng. There have been many complaints and allegations about the involvement of law enforcement officers in this heinous crime and these arrests will have a devastating impact on the syndicate,” he said.