westbury human remains found on cape town beach

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Four gunmen storm Mthatha police station, execute prisoner

The second attack on an Eastern Cape police station this month.

westbury human remains found on cape town beach

File photo

In yet another attack on an Eastern Cape police station, four heavily armed gunmen stormed the holding cells on Monday, executing a prisoner arrested on firearms charges.

The Ngangelizwe Police Station is the latest lockup to fall victim to an attack. According to Dispatch Live, four men donning balaclavas, armed with rifles and pistols, forced their way into the station and held officers on duty at gunpoint.

The station raiders then demanded the keys to both the gun safe and the holding cells. The police officers on duty were then forced to lie on the floor; their hands bound together.

While two gunmen watched over the incapacitated police officers, the other two made their way to the holding cells. Exactly what transpired next is a matter shrouded in mystery, however, before the attackers were done, one prisoner would lose his life.

Several gunshots in the holding cells

Gunshots rang out and a 38-year-old man became the victim of an execution-style slaying.

While not much is known about the victim, Colonel Brenda Muridili, the national police spokesperson, confirmed that the man was arrested for illegal possession of a firearm in the Ngcobo area in July.

Muridili confirmed the death of one inmate, stating that police were actively combing the area for clues, saying:

“It is alleged that four suspects in possession of firearms entered the Community Service Centre just after midnight and held the members on duty at gun point. Two of the suspects proceeded to the holding cells and the members heard several gunshots. The suspects then fled the scene. Upon investigation, it was found that a person who was in custody had been fatally shot. He was arrested on the 29th of July 2018 for possession of firearms.”

Luckily, police officers on duty were spared any physical violence, and no firearms were stolen from the station.

Muridili has stated that the reasons for the slayings are currently under investigation and that a manhunt for the suspects was currently underway, saying:

“In the meantime, I have ordered that the 72-hour Action Plan be implemented immediately to track down these perpetrators who have total disregard for human lives as well as the authority of the State. I am confident that these perpetrators will be brought to book as we continue to stamp the authority of the State.”

The Ngcobo connection

This latest station attack comes six months after the killing of five South African Police Service (SAPS) officers in Ngcobo, near Queenstown. Coincidentally, the man killed in the Ngangelizwe Police Station was arrested in Ngcobo on weapons charges.

Earlier this month, four armed intruders forced their way into the Kareedouw police station, also in the Eastern Cape, holding police officers on duty hostage and forcing them to open gun safes in the station. Firearms stolen include two R5 rifles, as well as three 9mm pistols.