JOHANNESBURG - Gauteng officials say there's been an increase in child kidnappings for ransom.
Gauteng MEC for Community Safety, Sizakele Nkosi-Malobane has encouraged parents to be cautious following three incidents of child abduction and extortion reported at the Ekurhuleni North policing precinct since the beginning of December.
Nkosi-Malobane put out a statement, detailing at least three incidents in the province.
“In the first incident, a 17-year-old boy was kidnapped on 1 December 2018 at Kromiet Street, Croydon.
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“The kidnappers demanded a ransom of R10 000. Working closely with hostage negotiators, the family paid an amount of R5 000 through an e-wallet transaction.
“The child was robbed of his cellphone and an amount of R450 before being dropped off in Hillbrow, Johannesburg. A case of kidnapping has been opened at Sebenza police station and investigations are currently underway.
“In the second incident, a six-year-old boy was kidnapped on 2 December 2018 at Clayville Ext 34 and the kidnappers demanded a ransom of R15 000.
“The family of the child managed to pay an amount of R2 000 through an e-wallet transaction and the child was later dropped off at Kaalfontein KFC. A case of kidnapping and extortion has been opened at the Olifantsfontein police station.
“The third incident took place on 3 December 2018 at around 16:00 pm in Clayville Ext 21 where three boys aged eight and nine years respectively were kidnapped. The suspects were using a white Mazda 3 and demanded ransom for the release of the children.
"The parents paid a total amount of R4500 through e-wallet transaction. After the payment was effected, the children were released and dropped off near the Sasol garage in Midrand. A kidnapping case has since been opened at Olifantsfontein police station.”