Police believe Sandra Moonsamy, a member of the Naicker family that operates a multimillion-rand logistics company, Crossmoor Transport, headquartered in Pinetown, is alive.
She was kidnapped by “professionals” on Thursday evening in Pinetown while driving to her Westville home.
A short while after her abduction, investigators were reportedly able to “ping” her whereabouts via cellphone tracking techniques in Durban’s South Beach area, but since then have been unable to receive a signal.
It emerged that Moonsamy, 45, was abducted after the black SUV she was driving was blocked by three vehicles near the M13 and Stapleton Road intersection.
Moonsamy, the mother of two daughters aged 12 and 17, attempted to lock herself in her vehicle but her assailants fired two shots through one of the side windows before she was dragged out and forced into a car.
Her vehicle was found abandoned with a cellphone and some of her possessions.
The Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (Hawks) are heading the investigation.
Spokesperson Captain Simphiwe Mhlongo, at the time of publication, said: “We can confirm that (Hawks) members, together with other police units, are investigating a case of kidnapping and attempted murder.
“No arrests has been made at this stage. The motive for the kidnapping is unknown.”
A source close to the investigation said yesterday police believed Moonsamy was alive. “If the abductors wanted her dead, they would have shot her at the crime scene. We established that two bullets were fired through the (vehicle’s) window and entered the vehicle’s dashboard, when she tried to lock the vehicle.
“We found no traces of blood in the vehicle or at the scene to suggest the bullets had struck her.
“She had a second phone on her and we were able to “ping” it in South Beach, but it seems like the phone has since been switched off.”
The source confirmed, yesterday afternoon, that no ransom demand had been made.
In spite of a massive reward for her return being offered in a social media post on Friday, no positive leads had been established.
Inderan Naicker, Moonsamy’s brother: “All we are concerned about is that Sandra is returned safely. We will be offering a reward to anyone who comes forward with information that results in us locating her. We are continuing to pray for her safety and well-being and hope that she will be returned to her children soon.”
Naicker said the family distanced themselves from some media reports that circulated on social media yesterday, claiming that Moonsamy was found.
“It’s lies,” he said.
The outpouring of concern and prayer for Moonsamy has been documented on social media, and a steady stream of relatives and friends visited her family’s home in Westville yesterday to offer support.
“We have had an extremely high number of visitors to the Naickers’ home since Friday. People on our chat group have been talking about her disappearance and praying for her safe return,” said a boom gate controller in the Naicker family’s neighbourhood.