Two shot dead, 65 arrested as police hunt for men who gang-raped eight women at video shoot
Police on Friday said two suspects had been shot dead and 65 others arrested during a police operation to find a group of men who gang-raped eight women at a music video shoot in Krugersdorp.
One suspect was wounded in the operation, launched after the rape and armed robbery in West Village on Thursday.
Gauteng police spokesperson Brig Brenda Muridili said provincial police commissioner Lt-Gen Elias Mawela had led a multidisciplinary team of law enforcement agencies and security companies after the incident. He was joined by Mogale City mayor Tyrone Gray.
Muridili said 65 suspects were arrested for contravention of the Immigration Act, “including one that is hospitalised for gunshot treatment”.
“Two more suspects were fatally shot after allegedly pointing firearms during police operations. Two unlicensed firearms, explosives as well as other items that belong to the victims have since been recovered.”
The multidisciplinary team comprised of officials from Crime Intelligence, Special Task Force, National Intervention Unit, Tactical Response Team, K9, Flying Squad, Highway Patrol, SAPS Airwing and Tracker helicopter as well as the department of home affairs and other private security stakeholders, she said. The Airwing and the deployment of drone technology were assisting the ground forces to track the fleeing suspects.
Muridili added that the Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences unit was investigating 32 counts of rape after the rape of the eight women as well as a case of armed robbery.
She said the crew of 22 people — 12 women and 10 men- , were busy filming a music video when they were allegedly attacked by a group of armed men clad in Basotho blankets. “The suspects ordered everyone to lay down and proceeded to rape eight of the women and robbed everyone of their belongings before fleeing the scene.”
Police minister Bheki Cele announced earlier that three suspects had been arrested in connection with the incident, but later disclosed that 65 arrests had been made.
“Initially I said there were three people arrested but there are now 65. They are in the cells now,” said Cele.
The group was arrested in some mountains and bushes close to the unused mine dump where the rape had occurred.
The victims were aged between 19 and 35. Each of the victims were raped by between eight and 10 attackers.
Commenting on the identity of those arrested, Cele said the department of home affairs was yet to verify their identities but all were suspected to be foreign nationals.
Cele revealed that the police were also investigating some of the victims involved in the incident.
He said while 12 women were present for the video shoot, only eight were raped. Police were probing the four who escaped unscathed.
Cele pointed out that nine of the men who were part of the video shoot and were also robbed were Nigerian nationals.
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