86-year-old still in ICU seven days after farm robbery beating
An 86-year-old man is still fighting for his life in ICU seven days after a violent robbery in which a couple were burnt with a hot laundry iron on a farm outside of Kimberley in the Northern Cape.
Piet Els‚ 86‚ and Rikkie Alsemgeest‚ 66‚ were beaten with steel pipes and burnt after being woken in the early hours of the morning by four men.
Police spokesperson Captain Sergio Kock said on Wednesday that a 25-year-old suspect had been arrested and was expected to appear in the Kimberley Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday.
“The suspect was arrested on Monday at 6pm …. Jewellery that allegedly belonged to the couple was found in his possession‚” said Kock.
Kock said the couple had been burnt with a laundry iron and hit with steel pipes during the robbery.
Family friend Ruhan Swanepoel told TimesLIVE earlier that Els was “so rattled by the attack that he couldn’t open the safe”. The robbers used a grinder to force open the safe.
“The man is still in ICU‚ so no statement has been taken from him yet. He is still in a critical condition. The female has been discharged‚” said Kock.
At this stage the suspect faced a charge of house robbery which included the attack on the couple‚ said Kock.
The robbers fled with Krugerrands‚ diamonds‚ jewellery and the couple’s car at sunrise on the morning of the attack.
Els is a prominent businessman from Kimberley who owns various properties and a game farm.