By Molaole Montsho for IOL
Four men were arrested for allegedly stealing 18 laptops, a projector and groceries valued at R78 000 from a school in Bloemfontein on Tuesday.
Free State police spokesperson Brigadier Motantsi Makhele said the men, aged between 17 and 25, were arrested on Tuesday morning after police acted on an intelligence-driven operation around Ipopeng and Freedom Square.
“A principal from the local school in Olive Hill, Navalsig, received an alarm notification from school. Upon arrival at about 08.30, he realised that a window to the storeroom was broken. He discovered that 18 HP laptops, school feeding scheme groceries and a projector, all valued at R78 000, were stolen. A case of burglary was opened for investigation,” Makhele said.
The first suspect was apprehended in Ipopeng, where one laptop was recovered. Information led police to Freedom Square where 11 more laptops were recovered and three suspects arrested, Makhele said.
“Upon further investigation, police recovered three more laptops that were already sold to a second-hand goods dealer in town. Investigations are under way to recover the remaining laptops.”
The four are expected to appear in the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court soon facing charges of business burglary and the possession of suspected stolen property.
Free State provincial commissioner Lieutenant-General Baile Motswenyane advised residents to refrain from buying suspected stolen goods as they would also be charged. She encouraged second-hand goods dealers to request proof of ownership when they bought second-hand goods.
In the Eastern Cape, two men were arrested on Tuesday in connection with a house robbery in Gelvandale, police said.
Spokesperson Captain Sandra Janse van Rensburg said a woman was woken by a noise at 1am to find three men in her bedroom.
The suspects fled with a television set and her cellphone.
The woman woke up the other occupants in the house and, while they were waiting for the police to arrive, the suspects returned. As the police arrived on the scene, they were informed that the the suspects had returned and a description of the suspects was provided to them.
The police received information that the men were hiding in a house in Gelvandale.
Two suspects were arrested and the stolen television set recovered.
The suspects, aged 19 and 20, were arrested on charges of house robbery and will appear in the Gelvandale Magistrate’s Court during the week.