Three suspects used a toy gun to rob a driver transporting furniture using a toy gun. Picture: SAPS

Port Elizabeth - Port Elizabeth police in the Eastern Cape have sent a stern warning that they would deal with criminals using toy guns to commit crimes the same way they deal with armed suspects. 

Police spokesperson, Captain Andre Beetge, said police recovered a hijacked bakkie used to transport furniture in Zwide on Thursday. 

Beetge said the two occupants of the vehicle were about to deliver a mattress at a house in Magi Street when they were robbed at gunpoint by three suspects travelling in a white VW Golf. 

Beetge said the weapon used during the robbery was a toy gun. 

He said two of the suspects held the furniture vehicle driver at gunpoint and took off with him, leaving the assistant driver at the scene. 

The 55-year-old driver sustained a head injury after the suspects hit him with the gun during the hijacking. 

The suspects managed to evade arrest. 

Motherwell Cluster Commander Major General Dawie Rabie warned that "using a toy gun to commit a crime still qualifies that as a firearm in terms of Firearms Control Act. SAPS will use the same procedures in dealing with armed suspects, whether it is a real firearm or toy gun," he said. 

African News Agency/ANA