A group of tourists were forced to hand over R27,000 worth of currency and possessions to a gang of thieves, as they made their way from OR Tambo airport to their hotel in Johannesburg.
The incident has a shocking similarity to the now infamous story of the 36 Dutch tourists who were held up by an armed gang just six weeks ago. They were also in transit from having just landed, and were accosted before they even got to their first hotel.
Lightning strikes twice at OR Tambo airport
However, according to documents obtained by Times Live, yesterday’s robbery targeted a car rather than a bus. The gang were able to get the tourists’ driver to stop by flagging them down in their white Nissan Almeira.
When both vehicles had pulled up on the M2, the report of the incident alleges that one of the men in the Nissan showed the tourists’ driver his police appointment card. He went on to ask for the driver for his license.
It was at that point an accomplice opened the doors of the visitors’ car, and ordered the tourists to handover their money and possessions.
Tourists put through traumatic ordeal
Travelling with Euros and Dollars – most of which was cash in hand – the group apparently were forced to fork out R27,000 to the gang. This was all documented in the police report “Jhb East cluster: Cleveland (Common robbery) from OR Tambo Airport”.
Though no injuries or fatalities have been reported in the incident, it remains unclear as to what the tourists will do next. Their Dutch counterparts chose to fly home immediately after their September ordeal.
It’s another damning commentary of South Africa’s shameless crime epidemic. As far as first impressions of a country go, it cannot get any lower than this. We need to find a way to protect our visitors as well as our selves.