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The Department of Education in the Amajuba District fell prey to a robbery on 25 January 2021. This being yet another well-executed robbery whereby a state department was targeted.
SAPS Corporate Communications and Liaison Officer, Lizzy Arumugam, explains “It is alleged the security guard was on night shift duty at his guardhouse when three unknown men entered the guardroom.”
Carrying a crowbar and shifting spanner the criminals protected their identity by wearing gloves and masks.
The thieves then blindfolded the security guard, tying him up with his shoelace. Afterwhich an unknown vehicle entered the premises with another individual joining the suspects. The security guard was stripped of his cellphone and taken to the admin offices. The three men then gained entry to the offices by forcing the doors open with the crowbar.
An undisclosed number of computer towers were taken before the suspects fled the scene. When the day shift guard reported for duty the following morning, he found the night shift guard still tied up. He immediately untied the man before contacting the police.
What makes the robbery even more concerning, this is the second government entity robbed during January with the Utrecht Department of Social Development (DSD) falling victim to a group of criminals on 18 January 2021.
Like in the above case, a group of men who showed an air of professionalism, escaped with a state vehicle, a petrol card, laptops and computers with an estimated value of R121 300. Following the Utrecht DSD incident, KwaZulu-Natal Social Development MEC, Mrs Nonhlanhla Khoza, said it was worrying that the Department experienced several similar incidents in different offices across KZN during 2020, where vehicles and computers were stolen. At the time, she said, “There seems to be a syndicate of criminals operating across the province.”
Arumugam claims the Newcastle Detectives are currently investigating the matter and therefore cannot confirm if the robbery at the Department of Education is linked to the robbery in Utrecht.
However, when looking at the incidences, both cases saw a group of organised men targeting the security guard first, before moving to the main offices and escaping with computers. Is a syndicate targeting government departments, or are these mere chancers? What are your thoughts?
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