Fourth suspect arrested in connection with break-in at Joburg’s IT nerve centre

20 November 2017 - 17:49 By Timeslive
Handcuffs. File Photo.
Handcuffs. File Photo.

A fourth suspect has been arrested in connection with a break-in at the City of Johannesburg’s data centre in Braamfontein two weeks ago.

The suspect‚ who was arrested on Monday afternoon in Olievenhoutbosch‚ north of the city‚ was found in possession of tools that were allegedly used during the break-in‚ Joburg mayor Herman Mashaba said.

The suspect is expected to appear in the Hillbrow Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday. The tools used to commit the crime have been seized by the SAPS‚ Mashaba said.

The suspect’s alleged co-accused‚ Nkosiphendule Ngomeni‚ Legogang Ngomani and Mcoseleli Kasi were apprehended last week. They all appeared in the Hillbrow Magistrate’s Court on Monday and were denied bail. Mashaba said the arrests were a result of a tip-off received from a member of the public regarding the theft.

“The investigation is still on-going and more arrests are imminent‚” he added. He said the city was currently in the process of building its data centre and disaster recovery centre at a cost of R35-million.

“We are investing in the protection of our citizen’s information‚ while ensuring that we build capacity internally‚ with the aim of hosting our data infrastructure while minimizing our dependency on suppliers to host our infrastructure. “Earlier‚ I had indicated my suspicion that the break-in was the result of an inside job‚ judging from the way that the criminals gained access to the building.

There are no signs of forced entry from the door they used‚” Mashaba said. “During the theft‚ the criminals made off with copper cables estimated to be around R2-million. This valuable infrastructure was sold by these criminals for R20‚000.

The City spends about R60 million a year replacing stolen cables. “We have since recovered these stolen cables at a scrapyard in Develand‚ South of Johannesburg‚” Mashaba added. “The City will engaging with law enforcement authorities to ensure that we continue the investigation and get to the bottom of this matter.”