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Police swoop on Radovan Krejcir

Published Nov 23, 2013

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Radovan Krejcir stepped out of his house, handcuffed, wearing a white hoodie that covered his face. The law had come for him.

Police blue lights flashed in his face as he was led by six officers armed with assault rifles to an unmarked white BMW. Two officers sat at his side.

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The convoy of police vehicles, crammed with heavily armed officers that had surrounded Krejcir’s palatial compound for over an hour, then sped off.

This was the dramatic scene outside Krejcir’s mansion in Bedfordview last night, where the Czech fugitive was arrested on charges of attempted murder and kidnapping.

National police spokesman Solomon Makgale told the Saturday Star Krejcir’s arrest was executed by a specialised multi-disciplinary team, appointed by National Police Commissioner Riah Phiyaga, who had “worked day and night” to nab the Czech businessman.

But the operation came as a surprise to the Hawks and seasoned investigators, including private investigators Mike Bolhuis and Paul O’Sullivan, who have been probing Krejcir’s suspected criminal activities in SA for several years.

“We had no idea about the arrest as crime intelligence had acted on their own, but nonetheless we are very glad that he has been taken down,” Bolhuis said. 

UNCONFIRMED INJURY

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While police carried out their “secret” operation, an ambulance was also seen outside the Kloof Street house. The Saturday Star understands there had been an injury inside Krejcir’s home, but police would not confirm this.

Krejcir apparently spent the night being questioned at crime intelligence headquarters in Joburg. This, however, could not be verified.

Makgale said more details of the arrest would be revealed at a press conference on Saturday.

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The Czech made headlines in recent weeks after several of his associates were killed in separate incidents in Bedfordview.

Veselin Laganin and Sam Issa were murdered in two separate incidents last month while two other associates, Ronnie Bvuma and Jan Charvat, were killed when a bomb went off at Krejcir’s business, Money Point, in Bedfordview earlier this month.

Five others were injured but Krejcir was not on the scene during the blast.

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Before that, he survived an attempt on his life when remote-controlled shotguns opened fire on him from behind the number plate of a parked car outside the shop.

Krejcir’s mother, Nadezda Krejcirova, has offered a R2 million reward for information on the two attempts on her son’s life, a report said.

Last week, the SA Revenue Service seized Krejcir’s assets and arrested his business manager Ivan Savov. He was charged with fraud involving R10m.

The fugitive has also denied recent allegations that he had ordered six international hits since his arrival in South Africa.

Krejcir is fighting extradition to his home country where he has been charged in absentia on a number of counts of tax fraud and other charges.

Specialist investigator Mike Bolhuis, who is part of a team probing Krejcir, said he was really pleased with the arrest.

Bolhuis added that a number of witnesses have come forward in the last week to assist in the case.

“Because of the constant pressure of the media, witnesses have come forward and will testify against Radovan. We are urging those close to Radovan to come forward and co-operate with the police. They can either stand by him or fall with him because the cookie is crumbling and all will be over soon.”

While the police stood guard outside Krejcir’s home, onlookers drove past. Some even stopped their cars outside the property.

“What’s happening here?” asked one resident. “Is Radovan being arrested? I certainly hope so, because we are tired of the man.” -Saturday Star

 

*This article was edited at 7:25am on November 24, 2013.

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