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we'll bust heist kings in 4 weeks

By Dudu Busani-Dube | 2010-01-22 00:00:00.0

IT'S three down, seven to go after the Hawks' nabbed 10 of the country's most notorious criminals.

IT'S three down, seven to go after the Hawks' nabbed 10 of the country's most notorious criminals.

The Hawks yesterday disclosed that they will in fact get the rest of the country's most wanted kingpins within four weeks.

Alleged cash-in-transit kingpins Jethros "Malombo" Mthembu and Josiah "MaSeven" Nkosi were arrested yesterday in Kempton Park, east of Joburg, and Winterveldt, north of Pretoria, respectively.

This was only three days after Moeketsi "Keke" Masike, suspected of involvement in nine cash heists, was nabbed in Fourways.

"They are all ringleaders in their operating groups. We have the names and particulars of the other seven still on the run and we will definitely get them," said Hawks spokesperson Musa Zondi.

Mthembu's trail of alleged crimes include the cash-in-transit robbery in which R2,7million was stolen in Flagstaff, Eastern Cape, in 2008. Explosives were used to blow up the cash van, leading to the death of one person.

"He was also wanted by police in connection with a business robbery in Ulundi in 2008. In that robbery he was injured in a shootout with the police but later escaped from hospital while under police guard," Zondi said.

Mthembu has also been named as a suspect in an attempted heist in Boksburg last year. He is also suspected of ATM bombings and possession of explosives.

Nkosi was arrested at his house in Winterveldt, after being on the police's most wanted list for years.

His alleged crimes include cash heists, murder, attempted murder, housebreaking, theft and sexual offences.

"He was also a suspect in the murder of special task force Inspector Mkhwanazi in November 2007," Zondi said.

National Police Commissioner Bheki Cele has commended the task team for the arrests.

"The world of cash-in-transit (robbers) is falling apart, fast. If they shift to other crimes, we will get them over and over."

Masike appeared in the Randburg Magistrate's court on Tuesday while Mthembu and Nkosi are expected to appear in court soon.