District Mail

Jewel ‘thieves’ swoop in

- Jamey Gor­don Crime · Incidents · Delft · Independent Police Investigative Directorate

This week’s jew­ellery heist is the sec­ond stores in Som­er­set Mall have fallen prey to within a few months.

Six armed men swooped on a jew­ellery store near En­trance 2 on Sun­day 16 Fe­bru­ary (“Foiled rob­bery at­tempt at mall”, Distric­tMail, 20 Fe­bru­ary). En­ter­ing the mall the rob­bers held five se­cu­rity guards hostage and im­me­di­ately made for Van Deijl Jew­ellers.

The armed rob­bery was foiled when the men smashed the win­dow of the store and the se­cu­rity shut­ters were im­me­di­ately ac­ti­vated. The sus­pects es­caped with no jew­ellery and made off in two get­away ve­hi­cles.

Tues­day’s (11 Au­gust) in­ci­dent at an­other jew­ellery store, also close to En­trance 2, how­ever, played out dif­fer­ently.

A sus­pect was shot dead and an­other wounded in a shoot-out with po­lice fol­low­ing the armed rob­bery, less than six months after the last.

Ac­cord­ing to Sergeant Suzan Jan­tjies, spokesper­son for Som­er­set West po­lice, the de­ceased was among a group of five sus­pected rob­bers who pounced on the jew­ellery store at 10:20 on Tues­day.

She said four men armed with firearms and a crow­bar tar­geted the store. They al­legedly smashed in a dis­play win­dow, threat­ened staff who were forced into a back room and made off with jew­ellery.

Mall se­cu­rity who re­sponded to the in­ci­dent ap­pre­hended a 30-year-old sus­pect from Cross­roads. It is be­lieved the other four fled in a white Audi, which was pur­sued by po­lice and au­thor­i­ties on the N2.

It ended with the get­away ve­hi­cle land­ing in a ditch along the high­way out­side Khayelit­sha.

“A sus­pect was shot dead and a 31year-old sus­pect from Delft, who was wounded in the leg and arm, was re­ceiv­ing med­i­cal treat­ment un­der po­lice guard,” Jan­tjies said. “Two sus­pects man­aged to evade ar­rest by flee­ing on foot and re­main at large.”

A firearm and some jew­ellery items were found in the ve­hi­cle.

Po­lice are in­ves­ti­gat­ing a case of busi­ness rob­bery, while the In­de­pen­dent Po­lice In­ves­tiga­tive Direc­torate (Ipid) has launched its own in­ves­ti­ga­tion into the shoot­ing.

In a me­dia state­ment re­leased in light of Tues­day’s armed rob­bery, Som­er­set Mall man­age­ment con­firmed five of six sus­pects had en­tered African Di­a­mond, held up staff and helped them­selves to an undis­closed amount of jew­ellery.

“The sus­pects fled, how­ever five of the six were ap­pre­hended. Po­lice lo­cated the get­away ve­hi­cle in Khayelit­sha and the jew­ellery was re­cov­ered,” read their state­ment.

“No shots were fired nor any in­juries sus­tained on the scene, and the cen­tre is cur­rently trad­ing as nor­mal.”

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