JOHANNESBURG - Police officers in Gauteng have launched a search for a foreign national following the provincial vehicle-crime investigating unit's latest recovery of vehicle parts.
The recovery has since been linked to at least nine cases of either hijacked or stolen vehicles reported at different police stations in the province, Gauteng police said on Saturday.
In a joint operation that ran parallel with Operation O Kae Molao in Tsakane, the team on Thursday, together with Ekurhuleni Metro Police and Tracker security officers, followed a stolen vehicle from Soweto to Commissioner Street in Jeppestown, Johannesburg, Brigadier Mathapelo Peters said.
"Police immediately confirmed after inspection that they were facing a chop shop and as soon as the alleged owner, a foreign national, realised that police were onto him, he escaped. Police are still searching for the man," Peters said.
Through another key partner in the fight against vehicle crime, Data Dot, the team was able to establish that two VW Polo headlights were positively linked to a Randburg case opened this month; a Toyota Etios gearbox linked to a Brixton case opened in June this year; a VW gearbox casing linked to a Florida case also opened in June this year; and VW Polo parts with engine and gearbox linked to a Honeydew case this month.