Police at the scene. supplied.
Police at the scene. supplied.

Hijackers flee with thousands of rands as magazine falls out of firearm

By Genevieve Serra Time of article published Jan 13, 2022

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Cape Town - Police are hunting an armed robber who fled with thousands of rand from a wi-fi distribution team in Delft, which also runs a college for the community.

Pastor Charles George is the chairperson of the Delft Community Policing Forum, also runs a feeding scheme named Grace’s Feeding Scheme and heads Zoe Family Church and Home of Compassion College, which runs programmes for the unemployed teaching them 21st technological skills and a wi-fi business, Mzansi Digital Republic.

Last year, George called on a modernised drone, which is custom-made in Belgium, to be used to fight crime, which records thousands of hours of footage and is able to do voice recognition and recordings and facial recognition.

He told Weekend Argus in August 2021 that CCTV footage cameras were outdated and only showcased one angle, often losing images that could secure an arrest.

Now months later, armed robbers have attempted to steal his bakkie and shoot his staff.

But George said the hand of God had been on his team when the magazine of the firearm fell out.

George explained the team were collecting their monthly fees from the elderly and disabled in the community, a service they provided to elevate them from standing in long queues at banks and institutions.

The incident took place along Elands Street in N2 Gateway on Tuesday when the team were ambushed by four suspects who fled the scene.

Police spokesperson Sergeant Wesley Twigg explained: “A robbery with a firearm was opened for investigation after a 61-year-old male was robbed of an undisclosed amount of cash in Elands Street, N2 Gateway, Delft. The circumstances are being investigated. The suspect/s fled the scene and are yet to be arrested.

George said one of the gunmen had placed a firearm against the driver’s head and his assistant’s but that the magazine had fallen out upon instruction to shoot and fled with the key’s of the bakkie and cash: “On Tuesday, four guys tried to hijack our bakkie. They put a gun to the head of our driver and assistant.

“The suspects were driving a silver-grey BMW, and they operate in Section 22. We were robbed with thousands of rand, and they took the bakkie key with them. Saps and LEAP, together with myself, looked for the suspects but could not find them.

“We thank God no one was hurt or injured. If you in that area, please be on the lookout for that silver-grey BMW. The one robber shouted to the other one to shoot, but the magazine fell out of the firearm.

“The Wi-fi project is part of our ecosystem that introduces the fourth industrial revolution to the community. It's linked to the college.”

George explained they would be educating a further 50 youths in the community on technology such as wi-fi and that the collection of the money by clients was part of their service.

“We are starting a new ICT course for 50 young learners of Delft that will assist the community to get them to understand how Wifi works and how the fourth industrial revolution is going to affect Delft Residents,” he added.

“Our vehicle goes out to collect the monthly subscription from our clients.

“It will mainly be clients, who are elderly and disabled.

“The connectivity is crucial. People are studying and working online, and the demand and we do not want Delft to be left behind, and we compete with fibre companies.

“Here, the money stays in the community.

“We are giving fifty youth the opportunity to train at our college and see how Wifi and internet works because that is all jobs of the future.”

Anyone with any information about this incident can contact Crime Stop on 0860 010 111.

Weekend Argus

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