Crime Story of the Day

I laugh most days as I leave the house: “Suzannah, dear, I forgot to tell you….”  Inevitably a story of some crime follows.  If not from my concerned hostess, then from a co-worker, the radio, the paper, the people I meet throughout the day…  And they’re good stories, either because they are so extreme, either in their violence or their irony, or ingenuity.  So here I will add some of these as they come to me.

1. Crime here is so bad the police stations hire private security firms to protect them.  No word of a lie. 

2. Bribery of police officers is so commonplace, a friend actually recently paid one with a personal cheque.  What’s next?  Credit and debit card swipers in the cruisers?

 3. A 10111 (911) operator has been arrested for helping her boyfriend in a car hijacking ring.  “Operator – help my car is being stolen and the man has a gun.”  “Calm down sir.  Please hand your phone over to the criminal so I can speak with him.”  (operator to the criminal) “Well done sexy.  Now what are you wearing?”

4. A group of thieves were taking some Persian rugs from a woman’s house.  Her neighbor thought it suspicious so she confronted them and asked what was going on.  They said “Mam wants that we take her rugs to be cleaned.”  “Oh, okay,”  replied the neighbor, “I have a few that are getting dirty.  Let me just fetch them for you.” 

5. Not as funny as the previous ones, but I do like the list of supplies:

A packet of Romany Creams biscuits, a box of Rough Rider condoms, six AK-47s and handguns, and R700 000 in hard cash stashed behind car seats.

These were among the items found in four cars used by a gang of 24 cash-in-transit robbers busted by police yesterday after a wild rampage in KwaZulu Natal.

On Monday evening, the gang – 18 of whom live in Gauteng – hit two cash vans (stealing just under R1-million from one); murdered a security guard; had a shootout with police; and kidnapped a 10-year-old girl.

Police, under pressure after a 74% hike in cash-in-transit heists over the last year, have hailed the arrests of the gang as a major victory against organised crime.

Seven of the Gauteng gangsters had been out on bail for committing other cash-in-transit robberies.


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