80 cartridges from an AK47 were recovered during the latest cash in transit attack, this time in Mpumalanga.
Wahl Bartmann, Chief Executive Officer of Fidelity Services Group says the incident occurred yesterday, Wednesday 25 March at 17:45. Four vehicles and 15 suspects were involved in the incidents when the Fidelity cash van was attacked just outside Kabokweni on its way to White River. It was accompanied by a Tactical Surveillance Unit (TSU) travelling about 80m behind the main van.
Bartmann says the first attack was made on the surveillance vehicle by approximately five heavily armed suspects in a Ford Ranger. The suspects who approached from behind, opened fire on the vehicle. “Our crews returned fire from their gun points inside the vehicle. While this was happening our cash van came under heavy fire from an additional group of approximately three suspects waiting on the side of the road in a Ford Fiesta. They also started shooting at our surveillance vehicle.”
Our Officers in the surveillance unit managed to stop about 20 metres further up the hill and blockade the road so the cash van could continue. They continued returning fire at both suspects vehicles, managing to wound one suspect in the cross fire. The suspects in the Ford Ranger fled and the suspects in the Ford Fiesta then managed to hijack a VW Polo and sped off. Fortunately the driver had car tracking and managed to activate the tracking.
While the attacks were being defended at the bottom of the hill, the cash van was again attacked, this time by a Double-cab Ford with approximately four suspects and a VW Golf with approximately three suspects. Bartmann says the two groups were definitely working together. The suspects in the Double cab Ford Ranger rammed the cash van from the back trying to disable our vehicle and at the same time the van came under heavy fire from the suspects in the golf.
“Our Officers in our cash van managed to return fire and defend the assets. Our driver sustained two gunshot wounds in the process but fortunately they were just surface wounds and he is stable.”
Bartmann says all of the remaining suspects then tried to scramble into the golf and sped off. No money was taken in the attack. “It is concerning to see the extreme pressure these suspects are placing our Officers under. Our surveillance vehicle took about 50 AK47 rounds and our cash van another 30 or so rounds. We are so proud of the way our Officers managed the situation in a highly stressful and dangerous situation.”
The case has been handed over to the local SAPS who were on the scene with their forensic units to take fingerprints and DNA.
“We anticipate these attacks could very like escalate during the lockdown and we will be on high alert,”’ concludes Bartmann.