Intelligence driven operation navigates members to a couple who could be linked to business robberies

NELSPRUIT - An Intelligence driven operation carried out by members from Kwaggafontein has navigated them to two alleged robbers and recovered various jewellery items. The seized items are believed to be the products of two separate robberies.

According to the information, crime intelligence structure in the province assisted members to have a breakthrough on two robberies incidents which were carried out at Kwaggafontein recently. One was carried out on 08 July 2022 whilst the other was carried out on 12 July 2022 at Sterns Jewelery Shop in Phola Mall, Kwaggafontein.

It is said that during the robberies, a group of about three to four armed suspects stormed into the shop and held their victims at gunpoint then robbed them of some jewellery items before fleeing the scene. The estimated value of the items robbed amounted to a total of about R300 000-00. Both incidents were separately reported to the police at Kwaggafontein. A team of experts in the investigation fraternity was assembled to probe.

In the early hours of 19 July 2022, the members operationalized the provided information then recovered the suspected stolen items at various areas including Machiding and Tweefontein.

During the investigation the members were led to one of the former police officer who previously worked at Kwaggafontein police station before he was dismissed on allegations of corruption in the year 2014. The man and his wife were arrested and charged accordingly after being found with some of the items believed to have been stolen during the two robbery incidents. The police also uncovered that the woman is an employee at the jewellery shop which was robbed.

Among the items which were recovered during the operation included 2 tempo watches, 2 Hisense E31 cell phones, Samsung A03 cell phone, Camon Tecno cell phone, 6 other cell phones, 57 finger rings, 21 earrings, 15 necklaces, 14 wrist watches, a bracelet, as well as 4 perfumes. Some of the items were reportedly still having tags from Sterns Jewelery Shop.

Lindiwe Thandiwe Mgidi (34) has already appeared at Mkobola Magistrate's Court on Tuesday, 19 July 2022 where she was granted bail of R5000-00. Benengi Simon Mgidi (45) also appeared at the same court on Wednesday, 20 July 2022 where he too was granted bail of R6000-00. Both are expected to appear again on 11 August 2022.

The Provincial Commissioner of the SAPS in Mpumalanga, Lieutenant General Semakaleng Daphney Manamela has praised members of the police for the breakthrough in terms of the arrest as well as recovery of the suspected stolen properties and the General pleaded with members of the public not to buy stolen properties. "If one buys a stolen property then it should be taken into consideration that such a person is actively participating in the whole value chain of criminal activities and syndicates," said the General.

Source: South African Police Service