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A TRUCK carrying cigarettes was hijacked in Joburg yesterday, the latest in a string of similar incidents.
Reports have detailed hijackings over the past eight months where cigarette trucks are targeted and their security escorts shot and/or killed.
A source on a task team set up to investigate these hijackings said such hijackings were becoming an increasingly common problem.
“On average there are five hits a month in Gauteng alone,” said the source, who did not want to be named.
The source also said the hijackers have inside information that allows them to pull off these hijackings. How they obtain such info has left the task team baffled.
In the incident yesterday, the truck’s route was blocked by the hijackers’ vehicle as it took the Barbara Road offramp in Edenvale, travelling east at about 8am.
A private security vehicle was escorting the truck and its cargo of cigarettes, and became involved in a shootout with the hijackers, said police.
Spokeswoman Lieutenant-Colonel Katlego Mogale said one of the four security guards was shot and taken to hospital, where he is in a stable condition.
She said the hijackers fled with the driver of the truck still on board towards Germiston, where the driver was dropped off.
Police recovered the truck on Knights Road in Germiston.
The source on the task team said the people involved in these hijackings were very professional.
Mogale said it was unclear how many hijackers were involved, and no arrests had been made by yesterday afternoon.
She couldn’t confirm which company owned the truck or its cargo.