Three men are expected to appear in court soon after being arrested for allegedly kidnapping and extorting an e-hailing service cab driver in Bellville, Cape Town on Thursday.
In a statement released on Sunday, Western Cape police Brigadier Novela Potelwa said the suspects – aged 26, 28 and 40 – were arrested on Friday and were believed to be members of a local taxi association.
“In efforts to deal decisively with the crime of extortion, Bellville police officials arrested three suspects on Friday following the kidnapping and extortion of an e-hailing taxi driver in Bellville on Thursday.”
Potelwa said the suspects allegedly pretended to be customers in effort to lure the e-hailing taxi operator to a specific location in Bellville.
She said upon arrival the suspects ordered the driver to go to the taxi rank where they demanded money for his release.
The incident was then reported to Bellville police, who arrested the suspects and further seized their vehicle, she added.
“Bellville police were alerted and their investigations led to the arrest of the suspects and the impoundment of a Toyota Avanza.
“The same vehicle is believed to have been utilized in a similar incident involving another e-hailing taxi vehicle also in Bellville a week ago. The affected driver had opened a case with Bellville police after the ordeal.”
Potelwa further said the suspects would appear at the Bellville Magistrate’s court on Monday, 12 April, facing kidnapping and extortion charges.
“Western Cape police are reminding local communities to report incidents of extortion to the dedicated line 021 466 0011.”
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