via Bogus SA cops rob Zim travellers – New Zimbabwe 22/04/2015
ZIMBABWE travellers on an Intercape bus were held up and robbed by armed men “dressed as police” near Hammanskraal, Gauteng, before dawn on Tuesday.
Gunmen boarded the bus when it stopped to change drivers.
No one was injured in the robbery, but many among the 48 travellers had their valuables stolen. One woman, from Bulawayo, said the robbers stole R8 000 from her which she intended to use for shopping.
Other passengers said that the robbers were dressed as policemen.
“Everyone was terrified as we thought it was a xenophobic attack,” the unnamed woman told the state media.
Another traveller from Zimbabwe who did not want to be identified said: “When they flagged down the bus they appeared as if they were police officers. We were surprised when they produced guns.
“Before they got to me, I hid my phone and about R10 000 in my panties. I gave the gunman R200 and he demanded my phone.”
She said when she told the man she did not have a cellphone, he used the passenger list to find the cellphone number of her next of kin and called her.
“He introduced himself as an Intercape driver and asked my sister for my phone number. I was sweating, fearing he was going to dial my number and the phone would ring. My sister refused to give him the number, demanding to talk to me instead. She thought we had been involved in an accident.”
Another passenger said he lost about R40 000 to the robbers.
The bus arrived at Park Station five hours later than the scheduled time.
Intercape issued a statement confirming the incident and said the armed men boarded the bus when it stopped to change drivers at the Carousel Tollgate.
The scheduled changeover was done at the tollgate under the lights and in sight of the police and tollgate staff.
“The coach was approached by four armed men who then forced the coach driver to proceed to an area out of sight of the police and tollgate staff. The armed men then robbed the staff and passengers of valuables, cellphones and IT equipment.”