Thabang Mokoena, 23, whois facing charges of robbery with aggravating circumstances, kidnapping, possession of dangerous weapon and extortion was denied bail in the  Atteridgeville Magistrates Court on Tuesday.

National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) North Gauteng Regional Spokesperson, Lumka Mahanjana, said that the state had alleged that Mokwena and a male accomplice had approached  30-year-old Tumisang Mokgatle just after she had dropped her child at a crèche in Wespark in Pretoria West on on 14 September 2021. The men, who were driving a VW Jetta, had presented themselves to her as members of the SAPS Tracing Unit.  

“They indicated that a Polo Vivo motor vehicle belonging to the victim had a twin-vehicle that had been used in various robberies in the area. Mokoena and his accomplice then told Mokgatle that they were taking her VW Polo Vivo to Hartbeespoort Police station for verification,” Mahanjana said.

“One of them drove her car and on their way, they tied Mokgatle up and put her in the boot of the vehicle,” Mahanjana said.

 The kidnapping suspects later dumped her Polo Vivo motor vehicle at Hartbeespoort Dam where police found it later in the day.

“It is alleged that the two called Mokgatle’s brother, a practicing attorney in Pretoria, demanding R500 000 ransom money.  On 15 September 2021, police received intelligence information that the victim was kept at Kgabalatsane, in the North-West Province. The police followed up on the information and found the victim tied in a certain house in Kgabalatsane. Mokoena was found with the victim in possession of a toy gun,” Mahanjana said.

The state argued during the bail application that the court should not grant Mokoena bail because of the seriousness of his offence and the fact that there are suspects that are yet to be arrested in relation to the kidnapping and extortion matter.  

Mokoena did not testify in support of his bail application and the court ruled that he had failed to prove that exceptional circumstances existed in the interest of justice to permit his release on bail.

“His bail was denied,” Mahanjana said.

The kidnapping and extortion matter was postponed to 13 October 2021 in the regional court.

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