/ 12 March 2008

Foreign tourist robbed at Westcliff Hotel

A foreign tourist was robbed of his luggage upon his arrival at Johannesburg’s Westcliff Hotel from the OR Tambo International Airport on Wednesday, said a hotel spokesperson.

Another two tourists, who were in the reception area checking out at the time, were also robbed of their bags, said Gabrielle Palmer.

She said a robber held up security guards at the gate, while two others went into the reception area at 6.30am.

”Thank God no one was hurt. They just came in, grabbed the luggage and ran,” said Palmer.

She said the couple had since left the hotel to carry on with their travels.

Police spokesperson Superintendent Vish Naidoo announced on Monday that there was no evidence of a syndicate targeting air travellers.

This comes after a spate of robberies involving people travelling from the airport by road.

Naidoo said the investigation was continuing.

Border Control Operational Coordinating Committee chairperson Humbulani Ravele said foreign nationals arriving at OR Tambo International Airport would no longer need to give customs officials their intended addresses in the country.

It was not immediately known whether this measure had already been implemented.

Criminals have attacked, among others, envoys from France, Vietnam, and Tanzania.

In July last year, South Africa’s high commissioner to the United States Dumisani Khumalo was robbed at his son’s house in Greenside after he flew into OR Tambo. – Sapa