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SBS ROBBERY: 4 HELD, ABOUT E200 000 RECOVERED

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MANZINI – The theories that last Wednesday’s E0.5million Swaziland Building Society (SBS) robbery was an inside job could just be true.


This comes after the police arrested four suspects in connection with the robbery and about E200 000 out of  the approximately E0.5m which was taken by a lone armed robber, was recovered in the process.


The four suspects include two emaSwati; a 30-year-old female, who is a teller at the robbed SBS branch and a Guard Alert Security Service’s guard. Both suspects were present during the armed robbery.
According to an impeccable source, the other two were females from South Africa and one of them is the alleged robber, while the other is the driver of the getaway car.


This confirmed the suspicions by the police who watched the closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras footage, that the robber could have been a woman.


Cashier


The source revealed that the arrested bank teller was the one who was robbed at gunpoint during the incident, and the security guard was the same man who was manning the bank during the armed robbery.


The source said the duo was rounded up by members of the Royal Eswatini Police Service (REPS) from Criminal Investigation Department (CID), Serious Crimes Unit, which is widely known as Lukhozi and Organised Crime Unit (Tingculungculu) on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, he said the robber and the getaway car driver were apprehended yesterday afternoon. However, it was not clear where they were eventually arrested, as the police were hot on their heels from Tuesday.


The source said the bank teller was arrested at her place of residence at Ngwane Park, as she had been given some days off work. On the same note, the source said the security guard was redeployed to another post after the incident.


Even though the source was not specific on when exactly the bank teller took some days off work, it was gathered that the day after the robbery, she and the security guard were present at work even though the bank was closed. This publication reliably gathered that they spent the better part of the day inside the bank with some senior staff members and the police.

 


According to the source and closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras footage the getaway vehicle was a white seven-seater.
However, the source also highlighted that there was also a VW golf which was also linked to the armed robbery. According to sources, the police were searching for it as its registration numbers, which were shown by the CCTV camera footage, did not exist in the government car registry.


Insiders within SBS attested that the bank teller took some days off work after the incident. However, they had no idea that she had been arrested by the police on Tuesday.


Again, well-placed sources within Guard Alert Security Services said they were aware that the security guard in question was redeployed after the incident. They also disclosed that the company was informed when he was taken in by the police, but no feedback was given to the administration on what took place later on during the investigations.


Through its investigations, this publication gathered that during the robbery, the teller had the keys of the safe where some money was kept.
These are the keys she was using on her teller machine and another set which her colleague had decided to leave inside the bank.


As a result, after packing all the money which was in the safe she was using on the day, the teller was ordered to search for her colleague’s keys. She is said to have found the keys hidden somewhere and under the orders of the armed robber, she opened the money safe which was used by her colleague and stashed the cash into the burglar’s duffel bag.


SBS Marketing Manager Veli Dlamini said; “As previously advised, this matter is still under investigation. So, any further queries at this stage should be directed to the police, as we wouldn’t want to jeopardise the ongoing investigation.”


On the other hand, Guard Alert Security Services Matsapha Branch Operations Manager, who was only identified as Vanessa, asked not to comment on the matter. She said questions should be directed to SBS and the police.


Security


Meanwhile, the Human Resources Manager at the security company, Mbuso Dube, referred this publication to the office of the managing director (MD). However, efforts of getting the MD proved futile as he was constantly reported to be out of the office. 


Superintendent Phindile Vilakati, the Chief Police Information and Communications Officer, confirmed the arrests and that about E200 000 was recovered.
The robbery took place last Wednesday at around 4pm. According to a statement which was recorded by the 30-year-old SBS teller of Ngwane Park with the police when she reported the incident, she stated that she was robbed of an undisclosed amount of money which belonged to SBS. She said she was robbed by a man who was armed with a pistol while at Mahhala Shopping Complex.

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