WARNING: New gang strikes at Bester Robots

Unsuspecting motorists have become victims of daylight robbery at the Bester Robots and Phoenix police suspect that a new gang is in operation.

According to the latest victims, members of the alleged group bang on the car for attention and once you look up, they grab your key or any gadgets on display on your dashboard.

Similar cases have been reported to Phoenix SAPS with many cellphones and keys being taken. According to Phoenix SAPS communications officer, Cpt Louise Naidoo, the crime activity at the Bester Robots has been ongoing for years despite the public being warned to exercise caution when approaching or while stationery at the robot.

She said the crime activity was at rock bottom after an arrest of a gang earlier this year, however, a new group seems to have taken over the spot.

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Cpt Naidoo told the Phoenix Sun that the string of cases reported depicts that a new group is now operating, robbing unsuspecting motorists.

She said despite a Phoenix SAPS vehicle being stationed in the area to monitor the situation, the minute police officers leave the site, the gang strikes on their next prey. It also emerged that delivery vehicles and bakkies were also targeted, however, no cases were opened. 

A few months ago, a Phoenix Sun staffer witnessed an incident where a gun and cellphones were grabbed from a motorists while his vehicle was stationery at the robots.

“The incident lasted less than three minutes. The perpetrators were fast in their actions and managed to snatch a gun, a cellphone and they fled into a nearby bush,” she said.

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A motorist who spoke on condition of anonymity and is a  latest victim, is now more careful when he approaches the robot.

Cpt Naidoo said they have been inundated with numerous cases of this sort of theft, however, she expressed concerned that safety precautions such as closing windows are still not adhered to.

“Again, we are warning motorists to always keep doors and windows closed at all times at the robots, not to open the windows for hawkers and keep valuables away out of site before departure. Motorists must be on high alert and be cautious of suspicious people loitering near the robots. If you spot or witnessed any crime activity, contact the police immediately,” said Cpt Naidoo.

She urged members of the public who may have witnessed these incidents or may have seen the perpetrators to come forward to police with information which may lead to the arrest of the suspects.

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Mbali Khubisa

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