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Durban - A couple who were repeatedly tortured with a Taser gun during a robbery at their Ixopo farm, are relieved the eight men allegedly linked to the attack have been arrested and have appeared in court.
But Cheryl Biggs, 58, of Sutherland Farm, said she was angry and disappointed that among the accused was one of her employees.
Eight suspects were arrested at the weekend for the March 21 attack, in a joint operation by Ixopo SAPS – led by Warrant Officer Patrick Madondo – and Magma Security Investigations.
Acting on information, police arrested the suspects in the Underberg, Bulwer, Creighton, Riverside and Ixopo areas.
Some of the items stolen during the robbery were recovered. Among them were three guns and several rounds of ammunition. A suspect arrested in Underberg was found with R10 000 in his pockets and a further R10 000 was recovered at his home. The suspects were aged between 20 and 28 years.
Cheryl Biggs said the arrested employee was a relative of a man who had worked for them for many years. It was on their long-term employee’s recommendation that they had hired him, she said.
“We found him to be clever and bright and were training him for a bigger position in our business,” she said.
On the night of March 21, three men broke down the door of the couple’s home. They were watching a movie at the time.
The suspects held guns to their heads and repeatedly punched them. Cheryl had to have surgery after one of her bones was cracked.
Speaking this week, Cheryl said she and her husband Dave, 65, were grateful to have survived the attack. “We are thankful that they did not rape me or seriously injure us. The ‘chief’ of the gang had a gun while the others were armed with a Taser which they used to shock us,” she said.
Cheryl was tortured and suffered extensive bruising and swelling to her face and a cracked rib.
She said Dave had been tasered at least 10 times as the attackers repeatedly asked for the whereabouts of a second safe. They had already raided the couple’s only safe.
The robbers escaped in the couple’s Isuzu double cab, which was later found abandoned on the Underberg Road.
“The community at Ixopo are blessed with people like Captain Khanyisile Nana, Warrant Officer Madondo and the Magma team,” said Cheryl.
“They are really good and sensitive to the needs of the community.”
She urged the government to act on the escalating crime, which she described as “totally out of control”.
“So many people are leaving this beautiful country because were are not safe. This experience has been very traumatic for us. You are supposed to feel safe in your home,” said Cheryl as she burst into tears.
Eight men appeared briefly in the Ixopo Magistrate’s court on Monday charged with robbery and other charges relating to the attack.
The men were remanded in custody until Thursday next week, while police investigations continue.