Johannesburg – Police Minister Bheki Cele has said that more than 100 people linked to extortion cases in Cape Town have been arrested since community members and small business owners sounded the alarm bells. so-called protection fees last year.
Small business owners who owned restaurants, pubs and bars, rental owners and informal business owners were all targeted – with the union demanding a percentage of their income.
Cele said a multidisciplinary team comprising the police, the Hawks, the office of the Prime Minister of the Western Cape, the departments of community safety, transportation and corrections of the Western Cape, law enforcement agencies Cape Town’s law, the director of public prosecutions and crime affairs, had made possible the 106 arrests related to the extortion.
Cele said of the 106 arrests, seven had been released on bail, while the remaining 94 were still in custody.
He also said police secured a 20-year sentence against Shantel Reynecke, who was convicted of extortion, kidnapping, assault and human trafficking.
“Investigations are ongoing and we expect more arrests to take place. The integrated approach and the sharing of resources are due to these arrests.
“But injecting the 200 police officers seconded from the national into this province, as force multipliers in violent hot spots across Cape Town, will go a long way in our fight against this criminal trend,” Cele said.
Cele said he was happy with the work of the Extortion Priorities Committee after they started their work on startup issues.
“I must say that I am very impressed with the way this steering committee has worked together for the good of the people of this province.
“Although it is a long road for us, we have certainly started walking together on this journey.
“It has been teamwork, I want to express my gratitude to everyone involved for their time and effort and for integrating and integrating their various skill sets.
“I believe that if we continue on this trajectory, we will eliminate the extortion,” he said.