A 30-year old Sandile Nkomo and 35-year old Kwanele Ntombela were each sentenced to 20 years for armed robberies committed in 2009. The sentence was delivered at Empangeni Regional Court, Kwazulu-Natal.
During the year 2009 a syndicate was targeting vehicles delivering cigarettes for the British American Tobacco company. This syndicate would rob the drivers at gun point and remove the cigarette from the vehicles.
On 30 January 2009, an employee was driving a panel van making deliveries at Pietermaritzburg area was robbed of his vehicle and cigarettes valued at R265 416, 00.
On 4 April 2009 another employee was driving a vehicle at Gingindlovu when he was robbed of the vehicle and cigarettes. The vehicle was later found abandoned but the cigarettes valued at R504 281.33, two cell phones and a mobile panic button was stolen.
Cases of armed robbery were opened for investigation at Gingindlovu and Pietermaritzburg. The accused who were employed by the courier company were arrested. They were positively linked to both cases of robbery.
The Provincial Commissioner, Lieutenant General Mmamonnye Ngobeni commended police for the excellent manner in which they conducted the investigation of the cases.
“This sentence is an indication of the level of investigation that was conducted and we hope it sends a clear message to other syndicates who might be operating within the Province,” said Lieutenant General Ngobeni.