Thursday, December 8, 2011

Chinese visitors charge SAPS with robbery, assault

Chinese visitors charge SAPS with robbery, assault
December 8th, 2011
Visitors ‘beaten, robbed by police’

7 Dec 2011 – RANDBURG, South AFrica. Four Chinese nationals are laying criminal charges against members of the police: they were allegedly robbed and assaulted by puniformed, armed SA police officers.

The Citizen journalists William Tshabalala and Aarifah Nosarka quote the advocate representing the four Chinese businessman as saying that one of his clients was ‘arrested’ and appeared in Randburg court for ‘reckless and negligent driving, attempted murder and failure to stop for police’. All charges were withdrawn by the State as false however — when it was revealed by Adv M.D. Saladino that the four Chinese businessmen instead had been assaulted and robbed by the police during a supposedly ‘routine stop and check operation’ in the Douglasdale area.

The businessmen, three of whom are visiting South Africa from China, said they had been followed by a car from Bruma to Lonehill. “As we were leaving Chinatown, driving towards Lonehill, we noticed a car following us. We were worried that hijackers may have been tailing us, so we carried on to our accommodation,” businessman Marlin Chen was quoted by The Citizen as saying.

Uncertain if it was a police car or hijackers pretending to be cops…

However the businessmen then had shots fired at their vehicle. “And as we got close to Monte Casino, we noticed the car turned on (flashing )blue lights. We were unsure if it was in fact a police car, or if it was hijackers pretending to be police, so we carried on to the complex,” said Chen.

They searched our pockets and took cash, they kicked and hit us: we were so badly beaten we went to Fourways Life Hospital…

As the men arrived at the entrance to the complex, a number of police officers climbed out of their car and handcuffed the men, wrote The Citizen. “We were told to lie down on the floor and they started kicking and hitting us. They searched our pockets and took cash,” Chen said. They were then told to open the townhouse. His colleagues were made to wait outside while officers ‘searched the premises: they did not take anything from the house, but they messed it up,” he said. All four men were then taken to Douglasdale police station, but only the driver, a permanent SA resident, was arrested. “We were so badly beaten, we went to Fourways Life Hospital,” Chen said. “We would never have thought that we would be robbed by policemen. We did everything they asked us to.” According to Saladino, an undisclosed amount of money was taken from his clients. –, williamt@

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