Polokwane ‘sjambok wielding’ suspects to remain in custody

POLOKWANE -The four suspects are accused of terrorising, kidnapping, robbing and assaulting suspected drug dealers in the city, Seshego and Mankweng areas.

According to Police spokesperson, Brig Motlafela Mojapelo, the three suspects (aged 27, 33 and 37) have been remanded in custody until Friday 23 February 2018, where they will be joined by the fourth suspect (31) who appeared in the same court on Friday 16 February.

Police investigations are still continuing and more arrests are expected, concluded Mojapelo.

18 February

POLOKWANE – The suspects allegedly committed these crimes while wielding sjamboks under the pretext that they were eradicating the selling of drugs and Nyaope in Polokwane, Police spokesperson, Brig Motlafela Mojapelo said.

“The so-called Amasjambok have been terrorising people they suspected of dealing in drugs and nyaope in the Polokwane and Seshego areas. People were kidnapped, severely assaulted and robbed of their belongings; all in the name of eradicating the scourge of drugs and Nyaope. In some instances, these vigilante activities led to the victims succumbing to the injuries sustained during the assaults,” explained Mojapelo.

This vigilante group has earlier been warned by police to stop such activities. On 17 October 2017 during a meeting between the police management, representatives from the municipality these people were told in no uncertain terms the police will not tolerate any acts of lawlessness. All their sjamboks were confiscated on that day confiscate.

Their arrest however prompted taxi operators to protest at Polokwane police station the same afternoon, demanding that they too be arrested. This group dispersed without further incident when the officers attempted to arrests the group leaders.

All the suspects (aged between 27 and 33) will appear in the Polokwane Magistrates Court on Monday 19 February. Further investigations have already linked one of the suspects, 31-year-old man from Seshego to various crimes, including murder, robbery, kidnapping and assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm (GBH). He appeared before the POlokwane Magistrates Court on Friday and was remanded in custody until Friday 23 February 2018.

Further arrests are expected as police investigations continue, concluded Mojapelo.

The Provincial Commissioner Lieutenant General Nneke Ledwaba has condemned the said march. “The police will not tolerate any acts of vigilantism and will act decisively against anyone who takes the law into his/her hands. There are legal structures such as the Community Police Forums in all our policing precincts that people may join to assist the police in eradicating crime”, concluded General Ledwaba.

We call upon any person who might have fallen victim to the actions of this vigilante group to come forward to enable us press even more charges against any individual involved.

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