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'You come in here and I'll kill myself'

By unknown | Apr 03, 2007 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Tebogo Monama

Tebogo Monama

Neighbours could never have suspected that the staunch Zion Christian Church member could be one of the country's most wanted criminals.

They were shocked yesterday morning when they woke up to find their street, Roos Avenue in Kagiso, on the West Rand, barricaded and the ZCC member's house surrounded by police officers - including sharpshooters and hostage negotiators.

"When I accompanied my mother to work at 5.30am, I saw a lot of people in the street and thought they were ZCC members," said one of the neighbours, who did not want to be named.

"I thought there was a prayer meeting. We never thought the man there could be a criminal. He just looks like everyone else."

Most of the residents told Sowetan that the ZCC man was a God-fearing, respectable man.

The 29-year-old resident had kept the cops at bay from 2am to 9.45am. The police had gone to his house to arrest him. They had apparently been looking for him for some time in connection with an armed robbery.

The man had allegedly shouted at police from his rented room: "You come in here and I'll blow myself up."

That was when the police started to negotiate with him.

The police brought a woman, covered in a blanket, to plead with the man, but to no avail.

It was only after a lawyer was brought to talk to him that he surrendered. He was taken to Kagiso police station.

Gauteng police spokesman Constable Sefako Xaba said they were still trying to link the man to cases of armed robbery on the West Rand and other parts of Gauteng.

"A case of illegal possession of a firearm will also be opened," said Xaba.

A Norinco 9mm firearm and several rounds of ammunition were allegedly found on him.

The man is expected to appear in the Krugersdorp magistrates' court soon.


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