Durban - Five members of a suspected housebreaking syndicate were shot dead following a dramatic high speed chase at Fields Hill, west of Durban on Monday afternoon. A sixth man was seriously injured.
It is believed that police had received a tip off about the gang and followed up.
Colonel Thembeka Mbhele, police spokesperson, said officers tried to intercept the white Mercedes Benz SUV near Lahee Park in Pinetown and the gang fired at police.
“The men were speeding towards the M13 and police gave chase. Police retaliated to the suspects’ shooting and the driver of the vehicle lost control. The vehicle crashed and overturned on the M13 highway,” she said.
Five men, aged between 25 and 35 died at the scene, while the sixth man was rushed to hospital, under police guard, in a serious condition.
Mbhele said police recovered three firearms with serial numbers filed off, two television sets, two digital cameras and a laptop.
“It is alleged that suspects had been involved in more than two house robberies, today (Monday). The same vehicle has been linked to a number of robberies in Kloof and Pinetown. The injured suspect will be charged for attempted murder, possession of unlicensed firearms, possession of stolen property and house robbery. He will appear in the Pinetown Magistrate's Court after being discharged from hospital,” she said.
This incident comes two weeks after three men were killed in a shootout near the Mariannhill Toll Plaza.