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Cape Town - A Cape Town councillor’s two young grandchildren watched in horror as a guest visiting their home was held at gunpoint by four men, who apparently followed the victim from a nearby bank to the councillor’s Pinelands home.
The councillor, who did not want to be named because of safety concerns, told Weekend Argus his guest was attacked as he arrived to visit him on Friday, soon after making a substantial withdrawal at a bank in nearby Howard Centre.
Police spokesman Colonel Thembinkosi Kinana said no one had yet been arrested.
The councillor told Weekend Argus that his friend had cashed a cheque for R8 000
. He then drove to the councillor’s home, just a few minutes away.
The councillor said when he saw his guest’s car at the security gate, he opened it.
But the robbers, in a silver grey Golf 4, followed him in.
“I thought the Golf’s passengers were accompanying my guest, but I later realised he hadn’t noticed them behind him until they were inside.
As soon as he got out of his car, the robbers pulled out guns and forced him to the ground, in front of my two grandsons, aged six and seven, and their aunt,” the councillor said.
The fourth man apparently stayed in the Golf in the driveway throughout the incident.
The councillor said the robbers ordered the children and their aunt to stay quiet, before demanding the man hand over the money he’d just withdrawn. He handed them the R3 000 in his pocket, but said that was all he had.
The robbers then demanded the other R5 000.
“I can’t say for sure, but the fact that they asked for the remaining R5 000 tells me they knew exactly how much money he had, and that probably means someone had tipped the robbers off from inside the bank,” the councillor said.
The robbers grabbed the other R5 000 which had been left in the guest’s car, before making their getaway in their car.
The entire ordeal lasted less than two minutes,” he said.
The councillor said he had been inside and only discovered what had taken place when he went to find out why his grandchildren had been crying.
“I couldn’t believe it. We were just a few metres away and could have done something like close the security gate. But things probably worked out for the better this way because no one was hurt or killed.”
Police and members of the councillor’s security company arrived about 10 minutes after the robbers had fled.
The councillor said he was told by police that several other similar robberies had been reported in Pinelands in recent weeks.
“Even with all the security companies here it seems we’re still soft targets, and armed robbers are taking full advantage of it. I’m just glad my family is fine, if traumatised,” the councillor said, adding that one of his grandchildren had asked him whether the police would catch the robbers.
“More needs to be done to apprehend these criminals, as more and more armed robberies will occur as we get closer to the festive season,” he said.