/ 5 December 2007

Four apprehended over airport robberies

Four men were arrested in Johannesburg on Wednesday in connection with a string of robberies of tourists at OR Tambo International Airport, police said.

”The men were arrested in Hillbrow and Yeoville around 2am this morning,” said police spokesperson Sergeant Sanku Tsunke. ”The Johannesburg organised crime unit followed up on information that was given to them, and later established the whereabouts of these men.”

Police are investigating several cases in which foreigners were attacked after arriving in South Africa.

”The gang follows their victims from the airport before robbing them … We have recovered suitcases full of clothes and jewellery, as well as cellphones. We found two unlicensed firearms as well,” Tsunke said.

The men are to appear in the Johannesburg Magistrate’s Court on Friday.

Fifteen people were arrested during a crime-fighting operation at the airport last week, said the Airports Company South Africa (Acsa).

”Fifteen people have so far been arrested and 10 vehicles have been impounded following the launch of an operation targeting illegal public transport operators, hawkers and porters,” said Acsa spokesperson Tasniem Patel. — Sapa