A young man from Brits sustained serious head and face wounds when he was attacked by two men, and another man was tied up and held at knife point for two hours by a gang of seven during two separate attacks in the Brits and Hartbeespoort area on Friday.
During the first incident near Damdoryn on Friday afternoon at 15:30, 47-year-old Vernon Moolman was attacked by seven men when he stopped with his motorcycle on the R513 at the Mount Amanzi resort on the Crocodile river.
“I was on my way home when I passed the river and saw that it was in full flow after the Hartbeespoort Dam sluices were opened. I stopped on the bridge opposite the resort’s gates, as it is always a beautiful sight. When I walked back to my motorcycle, a man appeared and said ‘heita’. I greeted him and as I was getting onto the motorcycle, he grabbed me by the leg. Another man appeared and grabbed my other leg. I am a strong man and still thought that I could get out of their hold, but five more came from the bushes, grabbed me and pulled me into the bush,” Vernon told Kormorant.
The men dragged him thought the bushes into an orange orchard where they put knives to his neck and back and threatened to kill him. They took his leather jacket and wallet and asked for his cellphone which he did not have with him. They forced him at knife-point to give his bank cards’ pins. “There was one man, dressed in grey overalls who was especially aggressive. He threatened to stab me repeatedly. They tied me up and the aggressive man left with the bank cards. In the mean time one of them had pushed my motorcycle off the bridge into the bush. After a long time, the man with the bank cards came back and they talked, after which he left again. Two hours after they had grabbed me, the group with me received a phone call from him, presumably informing them that he had withdrawn the money. I heard them arguing over the phone and it sounded as if he wanted them to kill me. I heard the man with me telling him ‘no, he is sharp’.
Vernon was then untied and given his helmet and motorcycle back before the other man arrived back on the scene. “I just prayed the whole time. One of them asked me if I believed in God. I have never felt so helpless, it breaks me. I am one of the lucky ones who have come out of a situation like this unharmed and alive,” he said. R13 000 was withdrawn from his bank accounts in Brits.
On Friday night at about 22:00 Jaco Venter (24) was attacked by two men with a beer bottle and iron pipe while he was on his way to the shop at the BP fuel station on the Wagpos road. He sustained serious head and face wounds and is in the Brits District Hospital.
According to Bennie Dercksen of the KGB K9 security services who found the injured young man, Jaco was attacked by two men in a white Opel vehicle who stopped beside him while he was walking towards the shop.
“The severely traumatised young man told me the two men drove past him and then turned around and stopped. They got out of the car, wielding a beer bottle and iron pipe. They hit him over the head, neck and face repeatedly. They broke his cellphone, left him lying on the sidewalk and drove away without taking anything,” Dercksen said.
Jaco managed to get to the fuel station where KGB K9 security officers found him and took him to the hospital.
“We want to urge members of the community not to walk alone after dark. Be vigilant, even during the day.”