The AfriForum neighbourhood watch in White River in cooperation with the SAPS, High-Tech Security and Netstar on 4 November 2019 traced a Toyota Fortuner roundabout 02:00 in the morning after the vehicle was stolen during a farm attack. A farmer, who is also a member of the neighbourhood watch, was busy examining the fences on his farm when an unknown number of people attacked him and tied him up. Afterwards the suspects sped away with his vehicle. The neighbourhood watch member is unharmed.
The White River neighbourhood watch was notified late Sunday evening about the attack and stolen vehicle and a search for the suspects and vehicle was launched.
Neighbourhood watch members noticed the silver Fortuner at a Total petrol station in Kabokweni where the suspects were busy refuelling the vehicle. The vehicle’s number plates were by then already removed. Neighbourhood watch members patrolling the area again observed the vehicle at around 01:00 near Casterbridge in the direction of Numbi. Neighbourhood watch members and the SAPS chased the vehicle and followed it to Masoyi. According to Johan “Joe” Pelser of the White River neighbourhood watch the vehicle was pulled over near Ga-Tshwene, after which two suspects escaped.
The neighbourhood watch found suspicious bags in the vehicle and the police determined that it contained explosives. The police’s explosives unit was subsequently summoned to the scene. It is believed that the suspects possibly wanted to use the explosives to commit other crimes. Nobody has yet been arrested.
“We would like to thank everyone for their great cooperation in tracing the vehicle. People need to be more prepared and become involved in their communities,” says Pelser.
“Seven vehicle theft cases have been reported between October and November,” says Hennie Bekker, AfriForum’s District Coordinator for the Lowveld.