Property hijackers nabbed in Malvern
SCity of Johannesburg Executive Mayor Cllr Herman Mashaba uspected property hijackers were arrested last night at two hijacked properties in Malvern, East of Johannesburg. Four suspects were arrested at No 14, 3rd Street while 17 suspects were arrested at No 12 -12A, 22nd Street in Malvern.
The arrest follows a sting operation led by the City’s Group Forensic and Investigation Service (GFIS) Department working together with the South African Police Service (SAPS) and the Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department (JMPD).
The suspects were expected to appear in the Jeppestown Magistrate’s Court where they will be charged for contempt of court, trespassing and malicious damage to property. It is alleged that the suspects hijacked the properties which belong to one owner in 2013 and 2014 respectively. The suspected hijackers have denied the owner access to his properties alleging that he was a hijacker and was intimidated in the process.
The owner then obtained an eviction order last year which was executed but the suspected hijackers forcefully moved back into the property the same day. The owner then approached the GFIS which worked together with Saps Johannesburg East Cluster in investigating the matters.
“I am delighted that another property owner has finally gained control of his properties which were in the hands of the hijackers. This bring the total number of properties handed back to rightful owners to 31.
“Criminals must know that they might run but there is no place for them to hide in Johannesburg. Operation Buya Mthetho remains determined to ensuring that the rule of law returns to our communities.
“The City will not leave any stone unturned when dealing with criminals and we will continue to intensify the raids at these bad and hijacked properties with the assistance of SAPS and other law enforcement agencies,” Mashaba said.