ATM bomber wounded in shootout with cops

McKeed Kotlolo

McKeed Kotlolo

An alleged ATM bomber was wounded in a shootout with police in Mpumalanga yesterday morning.

The 37-year-old man from Mamelodi West, Pretoria, was arrested at Hendrina, near Carolina, moments after an Absa ATM at a shopping complex in Pullenshoop was bombed at about 2am.

The gang members were reported to be from Gauteng.

Police reservist Constable Vally du Plessis, who lives about 200 metres from the shopping complex, heard the loud bang and immediately went to investigate, the police said.

Captain Leonard Hlathi said about 50 metres from the scene of the explosion Du Plessis spotted three people who opened fire on him.

"He sped past the bomb scene, stopped a distance away and called for a backup," Hlathi said.

"While he was waiting for backup the suspects in a white Toyota Camry and a grey Volkswagen Golf 5 without registration numbers drove towards him and continued shooting and he returned fire."

Backup from the crime prevention unit arrived in time and chased after the gunmen while exchanging fire with them.

Hlathi said the suspects later abandoned both vehicles on the road and disappeared.

"On further investigation one of the bombers was found lying a short distance away from the vehicles with a bullet wound in the right leg.

The 37-year-old suspect from Mamelodi West is under police guard in hospital.

Money was also found scattered next to the vehicles and at the scene of the bombing," Hlathi said.

He said the suspect told the police that eight robbers had been involved in the ATM bombing.

The Toyota Camry was reportedly stolen in Germiston, Gauteng, but the Golf 5 had no record.

Anyone with information in connection with the bombing should contact Superintendent Botsotso Moukangwe on 082-556-5752.