File photo

Durban - An Ethekwini metro police constable who allegedly belonged to a hijacking syndicate was released on R4 000 bail in the Durban Magistrate’s Court on Friday.

Mondli Knowledge Malevu, 29, of Newlands West, has been charged with robbery with aggravating circumstances and two counts of kidnapping, but said in an affidavit that he intended pleading not guilty.

Malevu is accused of “facilitating” the hijacking and robbery of a wealthy uMhlanga businessman last month, by using police resources and abusing his authority as an officer.

Malevu and three other men, one wearing a metro police jacket and cap and using a police minibus, allegedly flagged down the businessman just after 4pm on Tuesday in uMhlathuzana Road, Seaview.

The businessman was asked for his driving licence, which he presented. He was told the licence disc on his car was expired, despite the vehicle being only four months old.

The man was shoved into his vehicle, while one “officer” stayed with the police vehicle.

He was taken to an ATM, where the robbers withdrew cash, after which they tied him up and asked where he lived.

He gave them the wrong address but they drove to his home on uMhlanga Ridge.

However, when they saw cars in the driveway, belonging to guests celebrating his daughter’s birthday, the men drove him to his business premises in Seaview. They tied up the security guard, pushed him into the car and stole R170 000.

The State sought to prove Malevu had facilitated the hijacking, using evidence from the municipality’s fleet management department and its vehicle tracking system, but Magistrate Vanitha said the State could only show the vehicle was in the vicinity of the crime and there was no proof Malevu was at the scene.

The other three men are still on the run. The case resumes next month.