Drama as cigarette truck hijacked

OUT OF CONTROL: The getaway vehicle that rolled Picture: Supplied
OUT OF CONTROL: The getaway
vehicle that rolled
Picture: Supplied

A gang of armed robbers evaded arrest after rolling one getaway vehicle and abandoning another near Kenton-on-Sea yesterday afternoon.

Police said the chase started at about 9.30am when robbers held a British American Tobacco (BAT) driver hostage in Paterson before hijacking the delivery van.

Police spokeswoman Captain Mali Govender said a joint search had been launched by police from Paterson, Kenton-on-Sea, Port Alfred, Flying Squad, K9 units and the Airwing.

“It is alleged that while a delivery of cigarettes was being made, two suspects got into the shop and pointed a firearm at the driver before forcing him back to the vehicle . . . and locking him at the back,” she said.

“The suspects then drove the vehicle to a location where they offloaded the cigarettes into two other waiting getaway vehicles.

“When police arrived at the van, they spotted a car speeding off. A car chase ensued and the vehicle overturned on a gravel road near Klipfontein. The suspects managed to escape.”

Govender said a 9mm pistol was found at this scene. “Information of the second getaway vehicle, an Isuzu bakkie, was then circulated . . . The bakkie was later spotted travelling towards Port Alfred on the R72.”

An off-duty police officer from Port Alfred K9 unit later spotted the bakkie abandoned in a car park in Port Alfred.

About R125 000 worth of cigarettes were found in a ditch nearby, she said.

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