Police in Limpopo made a major breakthrough when they intercepted a gang of men with equipment that might have been intended to bomb ATMs.
Members of the organised crime unit in the province arrested four suspects in possession of an R5 assault rifle, four explosives, detonators, four balaclavas, four pairs of gloves, a crowbar, hammers, cellphones and several pairs of scissors.
Aged between 24 and 35, the men were arrested at a petrol station near Madiba Park, west of Polokwane, at the weekend.
Provincial police spokesman Superintendent Mohale Ramatseba said the suspects, who are said to be from Soweto, were followed by members of the organised-crime unit after they were tipped off that the gang intended blowing up ATMs.
The gang was travelling in a stolen red BMW.
The prompt action by the police was lauded by acting Provincial Commissioner Celiwe Binta.
Binta commended the police officers for the "good work done in aborting the evil plans of the suspects, which might have led to the loss of innocent lives".
Ramatseba said yesterday that the suspects would appear in the Polokwane magistrate's court today.
Meanwhile, police in Polokwane have arrested seven men aged between 27 and 35 for possession of five stolen electric generators, five camp chairs and two 20-litre tins of paint.
The suspects were caught red-handed near Hospital Park on Friday.
The recovered goods were valued at R6000.