A local man was left traumatised, terrified and broke after he was kidnapped and held hostage by four men. Now he is looking for vindication.
Recounting the events, John Smith (not his real name), met a man who had advertised a laptop online at a local Wynberg pharmacy on Wednesday December 19. The man took him to a cottage on the corner of Tenby and Langley roads. “I didn’t feel threatened,” said Mr Smith.
Inside the house were three other men. “They told me to strip naked and took pictures threatening to put them on social media if I told anyone about it. They took my bank cards, asked for my PIN, cleared my bank account. They also stole my wedding chain and cellphone. Through the grace and love of God I am safe and one suspect has been arrested,” said Mr Smith.
He immediately went to Wynberg police.
They drove him around the area and he recognised one of the perpetrators who was then arrested.
Wynberg police spokesperson, Captain Nqunkenka Lindipasi, confirmed that a case of common robbery had been opened. She said a 41-year-old man who stays at the Grand Central apartment block was
arrested and would appear in court on Wednesday February 6. “I could not retrieve the details as to how they are connected to 8 Tenby Road as the docket is not accessible at this stage, “ said Captain Lindipasi.
When the Bulletin visited the house last week, there were two children inside the house and the security gate was open. The young women staying next door said they rent the cottage from someone known as Ayob. They did not have his contact details.
Meanwhile a man arrived in a car with foreign number plates. He would not give his name but said he rented the property from Ayob. He also could not provide contact details. He said he was aware of the incident and has seen a picture of the man and believed that he paid for sex which had taken place on the veranda.
Mr Smith denied this. “You’ve seen the veranda. It’s very public. And anyway behind the door where I was held was a poster of the Lord’s Prayer,” he said.
Mr Smith said he subsequently found that Tenby cottages were well-known crime hot spots but the community did not want to get involved. He has no idea what the man was charged with and has never been asked for his bank statements. He is now opening a case against Wynberg police for lack of support. Mr Smith is undergoing counselling at his church.
Kristina Davidson of the Wynberg Residents’ and Ratepayers’ Association said she had not been contacted by anyone about this matter. She said the City terminated the lease agreements for both properties and served notice on the tenants in August 2018, giving them the prescribed two months’ notice in terms of the lease to vacate the property on or before October 21. Ms Davidson said this did not happen and so property management submitted a request to the legal services department to institute the eviction process.
The City’s property management department confirmed this, saying there was allegedly a three-year lease in place, however, it was prematurely terminated due to the severity of their breach of agreement.
The City will re-tenant the property once it becomes vacant.
Eugene Dreyer of Wynberg Sector 1 Neighbourhood Watch said he has no details of the incident but believed that a case was opened with SAPS.