R46m bank heist was 'inside job'

Dudu Busani

Dudu Busani

The R46 million robbery at a Johannesburg branch of First National Bank was an inside job, the Johannesburg high court heard yesterday.

Andries van der Linden, an in-house investigator for FNB, told the court that shortly before the money was taken by the robbers, the panic button was pressed 16 times, but security did not respond.

He said the security personnel were the first suspects because the robbers had security access cards and wore security uniforms.

"We suspected that the security personnel were involved in the robbery so we had each of them undergo a poliograph test."

After the tests, the bank's security supervisor Simon Mncwango, 40, was arrested.

Mncwango and eight others are on trial for armed robbery, attempted murder, possession of firearms and ammunition.

The nine men allegedly robbed an FNB branch in central Johannesburg in February 2006. A shootout with the police ensued and some of the men were arrested inside the bank and others while trying to flee with an estimated R46 million.

The trial continues today.