Cops get bail after claims of shady R1.4m kidnap
Four police officers have been granted R3000 bail each after they were arrested and charged with kidnapping, corruption and robbery with aggravating circumstances in a case that would make a Hollywood crime blockbuster look like a Sunday school picnic.
They were arrested by the police's elite unit, the Hawks, last Monday and appeared briefly in the Randburg Magistrate's Court on Friday.
A constable and three sergeants are accused of kidnapping a Congolese national after he was robbed of R1.4-million in cash following a complicated business transaction between him and two of his business associates.
It is understood that after the incident, the officers called one of the the victim's business associates and demanded that he hand over the man's documents for his Mercedes-Benz as they wanted to sell it to make more money.
After the four officers were arrested and detained, the Congolese victim was also handcuffed and remanded in police custody after detectives linked him to cases of fraud.
Hawks spokeswoman Carol Mulamu confirmed the arrests but did not go into the details of the investigations.
However, Sunday World has established that two of the officers are stationed at the Yeoville police station while the other two are members of the provincial investigative drug unit.
The officers were driving state vehicles at the time they allegedly committed the crimes.
According to initial police investigations, a Cameroonian national was also arrested as Hawks officers swooped on several residences around Gauteng in search of the suspects and the missing cash.
The Hawks officers are understood to have recovered R50000 in cash when they arrested one of the sergeants in Centurion and recovered another R50000 when they pounced on the constable at his home in Ebony Park, Midrand.
A further R30000 in cash was found at the house of another sergeant. It was here that the anti-corruption team also recovered an unlicensed 9mm pistol with no serial numbers.
According to initial investigations, it appears that the officers from Yeoville had a corrupt relationship with the victim and or his business associates. They are alleged to have been at the victim's Ferndale, Randburg townhouse during a business transaction where the victim was supposed to share the R1.4-million - with his two associates.
Hawks probe notes read: "The members discussed about the problem between the victim and the other person. It emerged that the victim had a deal with one of the private persons involving R1.4-million."
It is alleged that instead of the victim giving his associates half of the money as per the deal, he had only given them R250000, which led to the fracas and the involvement of the officers.
The officers are alleged to have taken the victim with them under the guise that he was arrested only to allegedly rob and kidnap him.