Thirty safety deposit boxes were stolen at an FNB branch in Parktown Johannesburg on January 1. File picture

Johannesburg – FNB customers had to face yet another unfortunate situation after R1.7 million and valuables kept in safety deposit boxes were stolen.

Thirty safety deposit boxes were stolen at an FNB branch in Parktown, Johannesburg on January 1.

This is not the first time. In December robbers overpowered a security guard and stole just over 250 deposit boxes. Just days later, police found about 250 deposit boxes in a veld near the FNB Stadium in Nasrec with some just containing documents in them.

Read: FNB faces anger over safety deposit box heist

Lee-Anne Van Zyl, FNB spokesperson said the bank was unable to give further details on the issue from the incident at the Parktown branch due to police investigations currently under way.

Van Zyl however could not say if both the robberies were related.

“At this stage, there is no indication that the Parktown branch burglary is related to the Randburg one; however we are working closely with the South African Police Services and the Organised Crime Unit to thoroughly investigate the incidents,” said Van Zyl.

Gauteng Hawks Spokesperson, Carol Mulamu said they were working hand in hand with the internal and external forensics to determine the occurrence of these incidents.

“No arrests have been made as yet, but we are following up on information that will assist us to bring the perpetrators to book, said Mulamu.

She said the perpetrators seemed to have used to same modus operandi in both heists to get to the safety deposit boxes.

“The suspects grinded through the wall to break into the area where the safety deposit boxes are kept. The same way it was done at the Randburg branch," she said.

Mulamu has called on anyone who has information which can help the investigations.

A customer who had her safety deposit box at the Randburg branch said she was disgusted at FNB.

“One of the leading banks in South Africa, can seek to hold its customers responsible for its own inadequate security. What is the point of a safe deposit box and a bank that cannot keep one’s valuable safe one wonders,” said Dorothy Fox.

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Labour Bureau