Rustenburg - At least four houses suspected to be brothels were burnt down in Rustenburg, in the North West, on Wednesday.
This was after taxi drivers apprehended four people in a suspected drug house in Rustenburg North.
The three men and one woman, aged between 27 and 34 years, included a police officer as well. Two of the suspects were foreign nationals.
They were held hostage in an enclosed area near the taxi rank and the police used teargas when the crowd refused to let the suspects into police custody.
"We managed to get a 17-year-old girl from one of the drug houses in Noord today. We cannot allow this to happen, it has happened for far too long. We went on a second search and found the main man Rasta. People are scared of him because he has money and drugs," said Motseki.
"These children are young and they need protection. We will not stop searching until we find them all."
Irate community members went to IS Tavern known as a prostitute center and broke in and set it alight.
North West Provincial Commissioner, Lieutenant General Baile Motswenyane condemned incidents of public violence and warned members of the community to refrain from damaging of properties.
"We can also confirm that a suspect was arrested earlier today for a rape of a 17-year-old minor, while a police official was arrested for possession of drugs at the same place," she said in a statement.
"The police are currently working very hard to bring normality in the area. The residents are urged to remain calm and comply with the directives given by law enforcement officials."
She said what was happening in Rustenburg was pure criminal acts that cannot be justified.
"Those who are doing this must know that they are committing crime and that drastic action will be taken including against our own members who are involved in criminal activities. We making a humble appeal to members of the community to work together with the police to ensure that those who are behind this unlawful acts are brought to book."
African News Agency/ANA