Investigations into Ngcobo killings lead to further arrests, charges for crimes

It's not the first time that Ngcobo police station has been attacked by criminals.

It's not the first time that Ngcobo police station has been attacked by criminals.

UPDATE:

Investigations into the Ngcobo police killings have led to the revelation of further crimes and arrests, the Hawks said on Sunday.

Hawks spokesperson Captain Anelisa Feni told News24 that the task team investigating the matter had linked four of the six arrested suspects to a double murder in Umzimkhulu in KwaZulu-Natal.

“The investigation by the task team led to the cracking of the case in KZN. The suspects are due to appear in court tomorrow,” Feni said.

Feni added that three others, aged 22 to 30, were arrested at the Seven Angels Ministry in Ngcobo over the weekend.

She said the 30-year-old suspect was also arrested by the Investigative Psychologists Section of the SAPS Forensic Division.

“He faces three charges that include rape, sexual exploitation and sexual grooming.”

The arrest comes after unknown attackers entered the Ngcobo police station, between Mthatha and Queenstown, on Wednesday, February 21, and shot and killed five policemen and a soldier.

A subsequent raid at the Seven Angels Ministry left seven people, suspected to be involved in the murders, dead.

Three Mancoba brothers, who were church leaders, were among those killed.

Several young girls and women were rescued from the church, which locals described as a “cult”.

UPDATE: 

A sixth person is expected to appear in the Ngcobo Magistrate’s Court on Thursday in connection with the killing of five police officers and a soldier in Ngcobo in the Eastern Cape.

The man was arrested on Tuesday night at the controversial Seven Angels Ministry, Eastern Cape Hawks spokesperson Captain Anelisa Feni told News24.

“He was found in possession of an unlawful firearm. It was one of the firearms that were stolen from the police station where the officers were killed,” Feni alleged.

On Monday, a 19-year-old and three others appeared in court in connection with the shooting.

News24 reported that the 19-year-old changed his mind about wanting to be released on bail during his first appearance.

Next to him were his three co-accused, aged 22, 23 and 30. The men cannot be identified until an identity parade has been conducted.

During his first address as minister, Police Minister Bheki Cele said the men involved in the shootout conspired to rob the Capitec Bank ATM opposite the police station and identified the police station as a place to get firearms.

The Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (Popcru) welcomed the arrests and condemned the attack on the police officers.

“We welcome the speedy reaction demonstrated by our men and women in blue in apprehending some of the alleged perpetrators of the senseless killing of the police officers and the recovery of the stolen firearms,” Richard Mamabolo, Popcru spokesperson said in a statement.

“It is under such circumstances where police and community members work closely together that we can jointly combat criminal activities within our communities, and we encourage such relations to continue as crime can no longer be seen as a uniquely police issue,” Mamabolo said.

READ MORE: Hawks report could trigger further Seven Angels cult arrests

The arrest comes after unknown attackers entered the Ngcobo police station, between Mthatha and Queenstown, on Wednesday, February 21, and shot and killed five policemen and a soldier.

The Seven Angels Ministry was in the spotlight at the weekend after seven people suspected to be involved in the murders were shot dead.

READ MORE: CRL Rights Commission to go to ConCourt after Ngcobo massacre

Three Mancoba brothers, who were church leaders, were among those killed.

Several young girls and women were rescued from the church, which locals described as a “cult”.

National Commissioner of the South African Police Service, General Khehla John Sitole condemned the attack, saying he was “appalled and deeply saddened by the cold and callous attack”.

“I have activated a task team comprising of experienced detectives of the South African Police Service and the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation to investigate this attack,” said Sitole

“We will not rest until we have tracked down these heartless killers and bring them to book.”

According to the police, the unknown suspects entered the police station in the early hours of Wednesday morning and without warning, randomly opened fire on the members on duty.

“Three members were killed instantly in the community service centre. An off-duty soldier was also shot dead as the suspects were fleeing,” Brigadier Vishnu Naidoo said.

During the attack, ten firearms and a police van were stolen from the Ngcobo station and an ATM near it was robbed too.

“The suspects made off with a police van, taking two other members. The bodies of both these members with gunshot wounds, were later found along the roadside, six kilometres from the police station.

“According to preliminary investigations, it appears that [the] members were shot execution style.”

Two male officers who were injured during the attack have been discharged from hospital and five of their female colleagues are receiving trauma counselling.

More to follow. —  News 24

Client Media Releases

Mandela Bay to welcome iconic solar-powered race cars
Tender awarded for SA's longest cable-stayed bridge
MTN backs SA's youth to 'think tech, do business'
Being intelligent about business data
PhD for 79-year-old theology graduate