A 19th body has been found inside the lavish house in Makhado (formerly Louis Trichardt) were alleged cash-in-transit robbers were k!lled during a shootout with different police units on Friday.
Provincial spokesperson for the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (known as the Hawks) in Limpopo, Lieutenant Colonel Matimba Maluleke, said the body of a man was found as the law enforcement agents continued to comb the scene for clues this weekend.
“As we were busy processing the scene of crime here, we found another body that was in one of the rooms in the house so it brings the total to 19 now. It is no longer 18. It was a male, so you can see that it was a very serious scene of crime.
“We also recovered three vehicles that were reportedly stolen in Gauteng – a Ford Ranger, a Mercedes Benz ML and a Volkswagen Tiguan.”
According to reports, the house in the plush section of Makhado, was owned by a 37-year-old Zimbabwean national. His wife, his domestic worker and his gardener were also reportedly k!lled in the shootout.
Earlier, Maluleke said the police had stamped the authority of the State, following a series of armed robberies in Limpopo.
“Traumatic as it is (the shooting incident), but you will remember that starting from the beginning of this year, we had skyrocketing cases of cash-in-transit robberies particularly in the Vhembe area. It was as if we were quiet as the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation, so now it’s high time that the criminals see that we mean business. We are not going to allow them to do as they please here and we are going to make sure of that,” he said.
“Whoever was involved in cash-in-transit robberies, this is not the end. We are investigating. There are cases that are still under investigation so we can expect more arrests.”
On Friday, IOL reported that high-profile police officials, including national police commissioner, General Fannie Masemola rushed to the scene on Friday, after the shootout.
Masemola said police believe they had “broken the back of a syndicate” that was possibly responsible for a number of cash-in-transit heists in Limpopo, Mpumalanga, and Gauteng.
Speaking about Friday’s incident, Masemola said various units within the SAPS were keeping an eye on a group of suspects who were allegedly planning a cash-in-transit heist in Limpopo.
“The observation was made for a number of days before they pounced on an identified address in Makhado today (Friday).
Masemola said a senior police officer attached to the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation was wounded during the shootout and is currently receiving medical care in hospital.