Two suspected armed robbers were killed following a shootout with police in an integrated intelligence-led operation which botched a planned heist on Tuesday.
It was believed that a business robbery had been planned in the Crown Mines area in Johannesburg, Gauteng SAPS spokesperson Captain Kay Makhubele said.
Officers saw the suspects’ vehicle, a grey Nissan X-Trail stolen in Johannesburg in August, travelling towards Xavier Road in Ormonde at about 14.00pm.
“The suspects allegedly failed to stop on instruction of the police, leading to a high-speed chase and a shootout,” Makhubele said.
Police had returned fire after suspects started shooting at them, he continued.
“The suspect’s vehicle… was cornered at Lakewood Estate in Ormonde. The suspects disembarked the vehicle, ran off and continued firing shots at the police. Police caught up with the suspects. Two succumbed to injuries while the third suspect was taken into custody.”
No officers were injured.
“A total of five unlicensed firearms were recovered – three rifles, two handguns and ammunition. Police also seized the suspects’ Nissan X-Trail, a police hand-radio and other items [it is believed] would have been used in the commission of the planned armed robbery.”
Gauteng police commissioner Lieutenant General Elias Mawela has instructed that an urgent investigation be conducted to establish possible links between the suspects and the unlicensed weapons to previous serious and violent crimes.
Mabkhubele said police believed the three suspects could be behind a recent spate of robberies where Chinese business people were targeted and others robbed along the M2 highway and in the Crown Mines vicinity.