60% of suspects arrested for violent crimes in Gauteng are illegal immigrants, say police

14 November 2017 - 17:24 By Nico Gous
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Johannesburg at night. File photo.
Johannesburg at night. File photo.
Image: 123rf/ fjw

More than half of the violent crimes in Gauteng are committed by illegal immigrants.

Gauteng Police Commissioner Lieutenant-General Deliwe de Lange said on Tuesday that about 60% of the suspects arrested for violent crimes in the province were illegal immigrants.

“I am not xenophobic.”

De Lange was speaking on the sidelines after presenting the latest provincial crime statistics to the Gauteng Community Safety Committee at the Provincial Legislature in the Johannesburg CBD.

Murder increased by 6.7% from 3‚842 from April 2015 to March 2016 to 4‚101 in 2016/17. This was an increase from 28.2 to 29.3 per 100‚000.

According to De Lange of these‚ 190 were domestic violence incidents‚ 105 were because of mob justice‚ 82 due to taxi violence and 25 were related to illegal mining.

She said one of the challenges in dealing with domestic violence is that the police are reactive to incidents that happen inside homes.

Regarding mob justice she said: “I hasten to indicate that [deaths] attributable to mob justice continue to push the figures up as it becomes difficult to confirm whether or not the purported suspects are indeed the suspect‚ as alleged by the communities who decided to take the law into their own hands.”

The three police stations which performed the worst in terms of murder were Ivory Park‚ Roodepoort and Olievenhoutbosch. The performance of police stations was graded according to increases in the number of murders in their precinct and not by percentages.

In Ivory Park 122 murders were committed in 2016/17 compared to 81 in the previous financial year.

De Lange said these were "unacceptable high volumes". She conceded the police "did not do well" in preventing sexual offences‚ which include rape and sexual assault‚ and the so-called trio crimes involving carjackings‚ house and business robberies.

She said however the police have experienced a decrease in trio crimes in the current financial year.

“It has never been like this in Gauteng.”

According to the latest crime statistics Gauteng had the most violent protests‚ with 908 reported. In contrast there were 2‚267 peaceful gatherings.

Major-General Eric Nkuna‚ Deputy Provincial Commissioner of Visible Policing‚ said the hotspots were the R59‚ Tshwane‚ Ekangala‚ Soweto and Thembalihle.

Colonel John van der Merwe said despite the police vowing to release crime statistics every quarter‚ the hiccup has been finding time in parliament's schedule to present crime statistics. Crime statistics are presented to parliament before they are released to the public.

Crime has decreased by 11.5% from 2007/08 to 2016/17.

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