Cash-in-transit heists on the rise‚ says Namola
09 May 2018
BY KGAUGELO MASWENENG
There has been a dramatic increase in cash-in-transit heists‚ according to emergency assistance service Namola.
Those carrying out the heists are also becoming more violent‚ it says.
“Cash is king for criminals. Organised crime syndicates access critical information by either bribing or intimidating employees by threatening their security as well as that of their families‚” says Warwick Scott-Rodger‚ executive head of Dialdirect.
As a result businesses are advised to remain vigilant by screening employees‚ regularly monitoring them and minimising exposure to threats from criminals‚ encouraging employees to report threats and providing security for them when they do so.
According to Kalyani Pillay‚ chief executive officer of the South African Banking Risk Information Centre (Sabric)‚ the current operandi modus is large groups of heavily armed criminals carrying out heists in stolen expensive cars.
“They force the cash-in-transit armoured vehicle to a stop. They then use explosives to access the vaults on the vehicle. The result is a complete write-off of the vehicle. The violence used during these incidents and incidents where security guards are conveying cash between a service point and the armoured vehicle results in fatalities which is of huge concern to Sabric‚ the cash-in-transit companies and banks‚” said Pillay.
Anti-crime activist and Namola’s chief ambassador‚ Yusuf Abramjee‚ says that cash-in-transit heists have not only increased dramatically‚ but recent video footage also shows that criminals are becoming more violent.
“When we report that a particular crime has more than quadrupled since the same period in the previous year‚ it’s time to sit up and take notice. It means criminals have figured out how to beat the system and they know this is a low risk‚ high reward crime.
“In the majority of incidents‚ commercial explosives are used and the robbers are heavily armed with AK47s‚ R4 and R5 rifles and open fire easily. Gangs of up to 20 members attack in broad daylight‚ using stolen or hijacked vehicles‚ and they strike with military precision‚” said Abramjee.