hijack suspect caught twic e

AN alleged car hijacker who was severely injured when he was beaten up by residents mysteriously escaped from the hospital he was admitted to for treatment.

AN alleged car hijacker who was severely injured when he was beaten up by residents mysteriously escaped from the hospital he was admitted to for treatment.

But nobody knew that Mathata Problem Nchabeleng, who was under 24-hour guard at the Voortrekker Hospital in Mokopane, had escaped.

That was until he was involved in an accident that brought him back to the same hospital.

Police spokesperson Constable Hastings Chaane said they only realised that Nchabeleng was no longer in the ward when they arrived at an accident scene yesterday and realised that Nchabeleng had been involved.

Nchabeleng was admitted to hospital last month after being beaten to a pulp by community members following a botched hijacking in Lefiso village near Marapyane in Mpumalanga.

Police said Nchabeleng and his co-accused, Dickson Chokwe, broke into businessman Snepi Mohlamonyane's house and ordered him to lie down.

Nchabeleng allegedly pointed a firearm at Mohlamonyane, while Chokwe demanded cash and valuables.

"The two suspects took an undisclosed amount of cash and expensive designer clothes and drove off in a Toyota Tazz that was parked in the yard," Chaane said.

But the suspects were unfortunate.

Not far from Mohlamonyane's home the hijacked car got stuck in the sand, forcing the two to flee on foot.

Residents then realised that the men were in possession of stolen goods and chased them. They grabbed Nchabeleng while Chokwe managed to outrun them.

Nchabeleng was severely beaten until he was later rescued by the police.

He was taken to Voortrekker Hospital for treatment. It is not clear how he escaped while under police guard.

"Police found that Nchabeleng was involved in an accident yesterday.

"We thought he was still in hospital and would be charged as soon as he was out," Chaane said.

He said Nchabeleng was back at the same hospital, now with more serious injuries which he sustained in the car accident.

"He was with his co-accused, Chokwe, who was also arrested after evading police for over a month," he said.

X