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WATCH | CCTV footage shows how cops looted a store

Noxolo Sibiya Journalist

Footage from LM Cafe wholesale and retail store which was robbed allegedly by members of the police in Nigel, East Rand.

“I think it’s their first time getting hit,” said a man believed to be one of the police officers who allegedly robbed a wholesaler store in Ekurhuleni last month. 

The July 15 incident was caught on CCTV footage, where a group of men are seen taking money from one of the offices at LM Café in Nigel on the East Rand. 

“You know what this one said to me, he said he earns R4,000 and that I can take R2,000. I told him that he is crazy, we are here now and there is a lot of money here,” the man casually says to his colleagues as he laughs. 

It is believed a group of about 20 police officers, most of whom were in civilian clothing, stormed the shop, chasing out customers, shutting the business doors and conducting what they called a raid for illicit cigarettes. 

During the apparent raid, 152 boxes of cigarettes were taken and more than R150,000 cash taken.

It is believed the men damaged two CCTV footage recorders that captured other parts of the store, but could not access one recorder which was hidden. 

The spared footage shows how one of the men empties out a bucket full of money and then takes a bag of coins and put it in his jacket pocket. 

Another part of the video shows what looks like a police in uniform opening a cabinet where money is stored. The officers then place three managers under arrest, stating that it was for bribery. 

Seven police officers, some attached to the infrastructure unit in Ekurhuleni and other to the Germiston crime intelligence, appeared before the Nigel magistrate's court on Monday in connection with the robbery. 

They each face two counts of theft, one of malicious damage to property, defeating the ends of justice and corruption. 

In 2015 two police officers from the Nigel police station were dismissed for allegedly breaking into the same store, stealing cigarettes and cash. Video footage obtained by police from neighbouring shops showed that police officers in police uniforms were involved and had used police vehicles to load goods stolen from the wholesaler. The vehicle was registered to be used by the pair that evening. 

A criminal case was, however, not prosecuted due to lack of sufficient evidence against the officers. 

sibiyan@sowetan.co.za

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