Johannesburg - A gang using a white Mercedes-Benz have been targeting the residents of Houghton over the past two months.
The gang of five men have been involved in numerous armed robberies and hijackings in the upmarket suburb.
Yaseen Theba, from Vision Tactical, said they had been getting reports about incidents involving the white Mercedes since the beginning of December and, on Sunday, the security company spotted the car and gave chase.
But they lost sight of it as it disappeared on Louis Botha Avenue near Alexandra. The registration number of the Mercedes is unknown.
Theba said there had been 12 sightings of the car in Houghton since December. It has a sunroof, tinted windows and LED lights on the bumper.
The gang of five wear masks and gloves. Their modus operandi is to lift up electronic gates to gain access to properties.
About three weeks ago, a man driving a white Mercedes ML stopped at an Engen service station to draw money. Shortly afterwards, on the corner of Glenhove Road and Fifth Street, he was held up. Cash and his watch were taken and the men drove off in his car, Theba said.
The car was recovered a few blocks away, and witnesses saw the gang get into a white Mercedes that was waiting for them, and drive off.
“We suspect they noticed his watch at the petrol station,” Theba added.
Last Thursday morning, the gangsters entered the house of a businessman and held him and two assistants at gunpoint. They made off with valuables and a light-metallic grey Audi Q5.
Theba said the men are well dressed, and on a few occasions, they have been seen driving around the suburb with three men and a woman in the car.
They were stopped once or twice by various security companies in the neighbourhood. The officers were told that the men were brothers and were just dropping their sister off.
“We have noticed that they aren’t stealing cellphones or iPads or any electronics that can be traced.
“They are taking cash, jewellery and watches,” Theba pointed out.
Crime Line has appealed to anyone with information that could lead to the arrest of the robbers to SMS 32211 or call Crime Stop on 08600 10111.
If the car is spotted, call 10111.
Crime Line’s Yusuf Abramjee said indications were that the robbers were well organised.