A 24-year-old man was arrested by the police in Limpopo after he was found driving a Volkswagen Polo hatchback, believed to be used in a spate of robberies targeting hitch-hikers.
The 24-year-old man was arrested after a high-speed chase with the police, and he also abandoned the VW Polo and ran on foot but was cornered and arrested.
Limpopo police spokesperson, Colonel Malesela Ledwaba said police officer’ suspicions were escalated when they spotted the vehicle without number plates.
“Members of the crime intelligence and Tzaneen tracing team arrested a 24-year-old male suspect during an intelligence-led operation along the R71 Tzaneen Magoebaskloof Road in Tzaneen during collaborative operation on Tuesday,” said Ledwaba.
“During the operation, police spotted a wanted motor vehicle, a hatchback VW Polo silver in colour, without a registration number, and tried to stop the motor vehicle but the driver sped off.”
Police chased the vehicle until it drove into Merensky Farm, where the driver abandoned the car and started running into the bushes.
The driver was chased until he was arrested.
Ledwaba said the VW Polo is being probed as it is “strongly” believed it was involved in robbery of hitch-hikers between Tzaneen and Polokwane.
“The suspect will appear before Tzaneen Magistrate’s Court soon, on charges of armed robbery,” said Ledwaba.
Meanwhile, provincial commissioner of police in Limpopo, Lieutenant General Thembi Hadebe has welcomed the arrest of the 24-year-old man.
Earlier this year, police at Mokopane, in Limpopo arrested two suspects, aged 34 and 38, for possession of a suspected stolen vehicle - a Toyota Prado, and bribery.
At the time, Ledwaba said the popular sport utility vehicle was reported stolen in Brooklyn, Tshwane.
“According to information, the police received information from a tracking company about a vehicle that was reported stolen at Brooklyn, Gauteng province. They swiftly reacted to the information that led to the suspected vehicle that was spotted at Mokopane South.
“They tactically approached the vehicle and stopped it. Upon searching and testing the vehicle, they confirmed that it was indeed reported stolen in May 2023,” said Ledwaba.