At least two suspects have been arrested in connection with the kidnapping of 11 Ethiopians, who were rescued by police at a storage facility in Johannesburg. According to SAPS spokesperson Andre Trout, the victims were abducted in diferent parts of the country.
The arrests were a result of a joined effort by both Western Cape and Gauteng law enforcement: The kidnapping suspects are also Ethiopian nationals who police pounced on at the storage facility in Meadowlands, Soweto on Friday.
“The unrelenting efforts of Western Cape detectives to fight extortion in this province were rewarded with the arrest of two suspects during the early hours of yesterday morning in Meadowlands, Johannesburg,” Traut said on Saturday, 23 October 2021.
Kidnapped Ethiopians reunited with loved ones
Police say it was first the kidnapping of an Ethiopian man in Khayelitsha, Cape Town back in September that led them to Gauteng where they continued their search for the victim following demands for ransom for his safe return.
“In Gauteng our detectives partnered with Meadowlands police and conducted a raid at a storage facility in Hennessey Street in Meadowlands where a total of 11 kidnapped Ethiopian males were found”
SAPS spokesperson Andre Trout
All the victims have been reunited with their loved ones. The pair are expected to appear in court on Monday, 25 October 2021, and would be subsequently taken to the Western Cape.
“Five of the 11 victims are from the Western Cape. Two were kidnapped in Harare, two in Paarl and one in Worcester. The other six victims are from other provinces, and they were reunited with their respective families,” Traut said.
He says for now, the circumstances surrounding the extortion and kidnapping cases are still under investigation and the identities of the victims have not been disclosed.
This incident comes just days after a man appeared in court for kidnapping more than 50 Ethiopian nationals in a house in Johannesburg.