Aggravated robberies increase

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Police Minister Bheki Cele says aggravated robberies, such as carjacking, have increased by 13.8%.

Cele says there were 661 more carjacking cases in the period of October to December 2021.

Releasing the crime statistics in Cape Town on Friday, Cele said robberies at residential premises dipped by 0.4% and robberies at non-residential premises increased by 86 cases.

“Cash-in-transit heists also decreased during this reporting period. There were five less cash vans targeted by criminals compared to the previous reporting period,” Cele said.

Cele said Gauteng, which is the province where this crime is most prevalent, has recorded the largest decrease by nine less cases.

“The observed decreases in CIT robberies in Gauteng, Mpumalanga and Western Cape are attributable to the specialised CIT Task Teams established countrywide to infiltrate and take down these well-organised and sophisticated criminal gangs,” Cele said.

With regard to kidnappings, Cele said 2 605 cases were opened with the police.

“This crime trend has shown a decrease in only two provinces and the leading motive for this crime is high-jacking, followed by robbery and rape related kidnappings,” Cele said.

Cele said there have been 686 more cases of kidnapping, compared to the same comparative period.

He said the crime figures released on Friday show how far a solid plan, targeted policing and resourcing can go.

“We have committed to improve our state of policing, through specialised policing and refocusing our efforts and expertise in taking down organised crime syndicates.

“Over and above the CIT and kidnapping speacialised units, the SAPS has also established specialised units to deal with organised crimes in KZN, Eastern Cape and Gauteng.”

In addition to the specialised units within the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DPCI), Cele said it is encouraging that the Western Cape and Gauteng provinces boast fully functional murder and robbery units.

“Organised crime investigation units are also on board in tackling murder and robberies, as well as taxi violence in KwaZulu-Natal and the Eastern Cape,” he said.

Cele said there is no doubt that capacitation of the SAPS with the recruitment of 12 000 trainees this year, will further add to the gains of the service.

Cele said the last three months of 2021 were not a “free for all” for criminals.

“It is through the acceleration of this policing momentum and improving our working relations with communities, through Community based structures, such as Community Policing Forums (CPF) structures and other NGOs that have also been in the forefront of the fight against the scourge of crime that this crime picture can be improved,” the Minister said.

Cele encouraged community members to report complaints of wrongdoing by any police officer at any police station by calling the complaints center on 0800 333 177 or report complaints to MySAPS App www.saps.gov.za