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Hawks bust alleged kidnapping syndicate in Johannesburg

Two men have been arrested for kidnapping for a second time.
Two men have been arrested for kidnapping for a second time.
Image: 123RF / Rafaelbenari

A kidnapping syndicate has seemingly been uncovered in Johannesburg, the Hawks said on Wednesday.

According to SAPS Capt Ndivhuwo Mulamu, two men who had been arrested for a kidnapping case were linked to a second case last week.

"[The] two suspects were arrested at the Johannesburg magistrate’s court on Friday, while appearing for the unrelated kidnapping case of a Johannesburg businessman,” said Mulamu.

“The Hawks’ serious organised crime investigation unit pounced on Ronnie Mphela, 41, and Wesley Mokgadingwana, 40, with a warrant of arrest following their court appearance. The latest arrest comes in the wake of an investigation that linked them to another kidnapping case of a businessman which occurred in November 2018,” said Mulamu.

She said the pair had been in court to face charges relating to the kidnapping of a businessman from Newton in Johannesburg in April 2019.

For the latest case, the investigations have linked the pair to an incident in November 2018, where a victim was allegedly bundled inside a getaway vehicle before it drove away towards the east rand. A ransom demand of R300,000 was allegedly made to the victim’s family. The victim was reportedly later dumped near Daveyton, where he was rescued by passers-by,” said Mulamu.

Before their latest arrest, the pair were on bail, but after the latest allegation against them they have abandoned bail. 

For the second “kidnapping”, they appeared at the Alexandra magistrate’s court this week.

The case was postponed to Monday for further investigation.

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