Durban - Two men were arrested and money and guns seized following a cash-in-transit (CIT) heist in the Western Cape during which the suspects tried to make a getaway in a police van.
According to Brigadier Vishnu Naidoo, spokesperson for national police commissioner general Khehla John Sitole, a CIT vehicle was ambushed and robbed by a group of armed men at Klapmuts just after 6pm.
"The suspects stole an undisclosed amount of cash and fled on the R44 but as they reached Cloetesville they were cornered by members of the South African Police Service (SAPS) who were responding to [the] robbery.
"A shootout ensued but the brazen suspects abandoned their vehicle in front of Cloetesville Police Station and jumped into a police van and sped off," said Naidoo.
A "hot pursuit" followed, according to Naidoo, during which the suspects lost control of the van and crashed. They abandoned the damaged vehicle and fled on foot in different directions.
Police tracked down two of the suspects, aged 37 and 43, and arrested them.
Two assault rifles, a revolver and a bag with money were recovered, said Naidoo. "Two police vans were damaged but fortunately our police officers escaped unscathed and no other injuries have been reported at this stage."
The provincial commissioner was directed to implement SAPS' 72-hour activation plan to apprehend the remaining suspects.
Sitole praised those involved in the arrests for their "overwhelming resilience".
"The commitment displayed by our members tonight is a reflection of the commitment of the SAPS as a whole to ensure that people cannot commit heinous crimes and expect to get away with it,” said Sitole.
African News Agency/ANA