Ten Limpopo taxi drivers in court

Monday, January 28, 2019

The ten taxi operators, who were arrested during an alleged conflict over routes in Hoedspruit outside Phalaborwa on Friday, are set to appear in court this morning.

The ten suspects aged between 26 and 44 were arrested after a shootout, allegedly over taxi routes.

The police said the feud has been brewing since December and despite an intervention by the relevant authorities, the factions have been continuing to cause havoc.

The shooting took place on Friday after security vehicles hired by one taxi association to escort their taxis operating in a disputed area were confronted and chased away by a rival association. Three men were in the process struck by bullets and sustained serious injuries. Three taxis were damaged.

The police’s Tactical Response Team (TRT) responded to the incident and arrested 10 suspects after a chase.

During the arrest police recovered two rifles with 20 live rounds of ammunition, four pistols and two vehicles allegedly belonging to the suspects.

The suspects will appear before the Hoedspruit Magistrate's Court on charges of attempted murder and malicious damage to property.

Police say they are conducting further investigations.

The Provincial Commissioner in Limpopo, Lieutenant General Nneke Ledwaba, condemned the acts of violence and urged all involved to engage the relevant authorities to solve their problems.

He further warned all troublemakers that they will face the full might of the law.

Also in Limpopo, a police multi-disciplinary team has taken into custody a 31-year-old suspect for allegedly committing a police murder.

The suspect, who is expected to appear at the Seshego Magistrate's Court today, was sought for the murder of Sergeant Pieter de Lange, 30, from Westernburg SAPS.

During the suspect’s arrest at his home in Seshego, members confiscated an unlicensed firearm and a suspected stolen motor vehicle.

De Lange was gunned down in November last year during an encounter with suspected drug dealers who were travelling in two vehicles at the notorious crime hotspot in Ladanna, Polokwane. 

On that fateful day, De Lange who was doing observations in the area was gunned down whilst fighting back.

The suspect will be charged with murder and possession of an unlicensed firearm. The search for the other criminals is still ongoing. - SAnews.gov.za