Hijacked Bakkie Stripped While In Motion – Only In South Africa
Even though the South African Police Service (SAPS) have stepped up all kinds of efforts to clamp down on crime, it is more rampant than ever. The case of the hijacked bakkie is a case in point.
More units, more vehicles, more detectives, better training – these measures have all been increased and put in place to try and make South Africa more crime free and more safe.
The fact that crime is out of control was highlighted recently when a man was arrested actually stripping a hijacked bakkie – but while it was still in motion.
People believe that the man caught is part of a car-theft syndicate which specialises in Toyota vehicles. There has been an increase in vehicle-related crimes in the last few months in KwaZulu Natal, and more specifically Durban.
Hijacked Bakkie – Half of South Africa’s Stolen Cars go Over the Border
The South African Insurance Crime Bureau has also let on that of the R8.5 billion vehicles stolen in South Africa, about half of these – some R4.9 billion’s worth – are taken across the border.
The South African border to Mozambique is easily accessible – the ideal getaway route for stolen vehicles.
Other vehicles stay in South Africa as cloned vehicles while others land up in chop shops. These chop shops operate discreetly to avoid detection from the police, but they sell car parts from all the different makes and models that have been stolen. The highjacked cars are taken in, stripped of usable parts and got rid of quickly.
Hijacked Bakkie – Tracking Device Helps Track down Thieves
In Durban recently, a white highjacked bakkie – a Toyota – was taken in Chris Hani Drive in the morning. With this particular case, investigators found an assortment of tools used to strip and steal vehicles.
Some of these tools included an industrial monkey wrench, used for breaking steering locks. In their find, police also found 10 computer boxes as well as car keys. The tracking system of the bakkie was activated and the police and the tracking company followed the bakkie’s signal.
The signal took the entire team to uMlazi’s Z-Section where they spotted the hijacked vehicle being tailed by a hired blue VW Polo. Even while they were driving, the bakkie was being stripped.
The thieves were obviously looking for the tracking device. Police claim that when the thieves saw them, the driver of the Polo stopped the vehicle and ran away. Fortunately the police were able to apprehend the accomplice in the bakkie. People were amazed by all the loot in the bakkie.
Sophisticated Tools Ease the Way for Thieves
The police are also shocked at the sophistication of the techniques used to steal vehicles. One of these is a device that can be plugged in a vehicle’s on-board diagnostic system. With this equipment, thieves are then able to override it and drive off without the original key.
The highjacked bakkie, police discovered, was rented from a car hire service at King Shaka International Airport, but the car’s number plate was changed. There are other gang members involved, and police are hoping to make some more arrests soon.
KwaZulu-Natal is a hot spot for car theft and hijacked bakkie incidents, and in between April 2012 and March 2013 close to 10 000 cars and motorcycles were stolen. Figures for 2014 hadn’t been released yet, but there is growing concern for this rising crime. In efforts to combat car theft and hijackings, Provincial Vehicle Crime forums for all 9 province are now operational.
Hijacked Bakkie – Top Brand Cars are the Target
A huge problem for the insurance industry, and law abiding people who pay their premiums, is that thousands of vehicles keep reappearing in the system. This is costing the insurance industry a fortune, as these cars are actually cloned vehicles.
Criminals mostly target SUVs, double-cabs and top brands worth between R500 000 and R700 000 each. Police say they have a system in place, providing information on stolen vehicles. In the meantime the 36 year old man caught and arrested recently is expected to appear in the Durban’s magistrate court.
This is the reality of crime ridden South Africa today – get a wake up call, get insurance.
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