2007-04-12 : Gun battle turns shopping centre into war zone


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2007-04-12 : Gun battle turns shopping centre into war zone

Postby GOSA » Thu, 2007-04-19 08:01


Gun battle turns shopping centre into war zone.
Johannesburg, South Africa
12 April 2007 06:23

A shootout between about 17 armed robbers and police turned Fourways shopping mall in Johannesburg into a mini war zone on Thursday morning.

Violence erupted as five men opened fire on two police officers after they had robbed a jewellery store at about 11am, said police spokesperson Superintendent Eugene Opperman. The two uniformed police officers were on patrol duty at the mall. "When the robbers saw them, they fired at these officers who returned fire ... there was a running gun battle [in the centre] and one of the robbers was shot in the chest," he said.

The injured man was dragged down a service passage. Outside, 12 accomplices were waiting and joined in the gun battle. "The battle continued in the parking area until the robbers jumped into four vehicles and chased away from the scene," said Opperman. They took the wounded robber with them.

He said "miraculously" only one robber and no one else was injured in the shooting. Several vehicles, however, were damaged. The five who robbed the Michael's Design jewellery store held the staff at gunpoint. "They fired shots at some display cabinets, breaking the glass. Some jewellery was taken," Opperman said. The value of the jewellery taken was not known.

(And to finish off, my mate Eugene's favourite phrase) "No arrests have been made yet and the investigation is continuing," said Opperman. -- Sapa
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