The SAPS have warned members of the public against CIT cash looting which they say is both illegal and extremely dangerous.
In the wake of widely circulated videos of members of the public collecting money from the scene of an attempted cash-in-transit (CIT) heist police have warned the community that such looting is a crime.
A CIT heist in Dobsonville this week followed another incident in Kagiso just a few weeks prior where people flocked to collect money lying at the scene of the crime.
CIT cash looters could be charged
Police have urged members of the public not to contaminate crime scenes in any way and advised the community that they are obligated to report criminal activity.
“The South African Police Service(SAPS) wishes to send out a stern warning to community members that looting at cash-in-transit crime scenes is a crime.
“It is often seen in videos posted on social media platforms that money at Cash-In-Transit (CIT) heist crime scenes is being looted. We are appealing to community members to refrain from such criminality.
“We have noted such acts of criminality playing out at the latest CIT heist that took place in Dobsonville on Monday morning and of another CIT that took place two weeks ago in Kagiso. In both incidents, dozens of community members accessed the crime scenes and looted scattered money that was found to be lying on the ground, with some still in the cash van.
“When a crime is committed, it is the responsibility of the community to report the incident to the police by immediately calling the Crime Stop Number on 086 00 10111 and/or to report the matter to their nearest police station.”
A dangerous cash grab
Police also warned that CIT heist scenes can be extremely dangerous given the possible presence of explosives that may have failed to detonate but could still be live.
“Cash-In-Transit (CIT) heist crime scenes can often be very dangerous particularly when explosives are used in such robberies.
“It is for this reason that we warn members of the community that in some instances, it is possible that not all explosives were detonated at the time when the robbery was committed. This therefore poses a risk for the detonator to explode in their presence, thereby posing a risk for the loss of life.
“Furthermore, when a robbery is committed, the area now becomes a crime scene and those looting at such crime scenes often contaminate the scene which will constitute a crime of theft as well as defeating the ends of justice.
“We, therefore, call on all our communities to refrain from entering crime scenes but rather support the work of the police by assisting members when a crime is committed as opposed to being part of the crime itself.
“We also wish to take this opportunity to thank those community members who continue to take a stand against crime in their communities by reporting such criminality to the police.”
Police welcome any and all information relating to criminality which can be communicated via the SAPS Crime Stop number, 086 00 10111. Information may also be communicated via the MySAPSApp, an App which can be downloaded on any iOS or Android handset. All information will be treated with the strictest confidence.