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Latest hijacking trends: Motorists warned about ‘ATM’ method

Since June, a significant trend has emerged in hijacking incidents, where criminals essentially try to 'double-up' on their illegal activity.



Although hijacking isn’t a crime that is unique to South Africa, it’s prevalence in this country has made it an important part of the national discourse. Motor vehicle crime may have decreased during lockdown, but a loosening of restrictions has invited the crooks back onto our streets – and a new ‘trend’ is emerging.

Anti-crime advocate Yusuf Abramjee has made a name for himself in the world of law enforcement. According to the activist, a recent spate of hijackings suggests that these opportunistic thugs are no longer satisfied with just stealing the motor and any personal possessions. But rather, they are now taking victims to ATM machines, adding to their criminal rap sheets.

LATEST HIJACKING TRENDS IN SOUTH AFRICA

Once the targets have been driven to the nearest cash point, they are being forced to take cash out of their bank and hand it over to the robbers. Although this isn’t strictly a new ‘method’, the trend itself has spiked since June, putting authorities and motorists on high alert. Abramjee told Pretoria Rekord:

“We are observing dramatic increases in hijackings and motor-vehicle theft – criminal syndicates are at work. We’re also seeing more hijackers taking victims as hostages and forcing them to withdraw cash from ATMs before freeing them.”

“This is extremely concerning and it is bound to get worse. Our unemployment rates are soaring due to the effect that the lockdown has had on our economy and criminals are getting desperate.”



HOW TO AVOID GETTING CARJACKED

All vehicle owners are being implored to keep valuables out of sight when parked, ensure that their doors are locked even while in transit, and avoid stopping at the side of the road for long periods. Motorists must stay vigilant at all times, and in the month of July, we’ve seen hijackings reach new extremes:

§  Driveway carjackings surged, as criminals adapted to the new “work from home” culture created by lockdown.

§  A pair of criminal suspects hijacked a van carrying COVID-19 samples, causing a testing backlog in PE.

§  And, just this week, another hijacking attempt at a petrol station was recorded.

Visit our website for more details www.esbrokers.co.za

 

Article courtesy of The South African on-line

Validity of Licenses pertaining to vehicles following lock down



We have received numerous questions relating to the “validity” of licenses pertaining to vehicles during the “lock down” period and how claims are being dealt with.

 

Regulation 6 [Validity period of licences] of Notice 544 of Government Gazette 43339 of 20 May 2020 [Extending the validity of learners’ licences, driving licences, licence discs, professional driving permits, and registrations of motor vehicles] has been amended, as follows:

 

1)     All learner’s licences, driving licence cards, temporary driving licences and professional driving permits that expire during 26 March 2020 up to 31 August 2020 are deemed to be valid and their validity period is extended for a further grace period ending on 31 January 2021.

 

2)     All motor vehicle licence discs, temporary permits and roadworthy certificates that expired during 26 March 2020 until 31 May 2020 are deemed to be valid and their validity period is extended for a further grace period ending on 31 August 2020.

 

3)     Motor trade number licences that expired during 26 March 2020 until 31 May 2020 are deemed to be valid and are extended for a further grace period ending on 30 November 2020.




These extensions have been signed off by the Minister of Transport, Fikile Mbalula and Gazetted on 22 July 2020.

 

All motor claims will be dealt within the scope provided above and will not be delayed due the “expiry” of mentioned licenses.

We trust that this will clarify the uncertainties regarding the renewal process of the various licenses mentioned above and the claims handling process.

 

If you have any questions feel free to visit our website www.esbrokers.co.za
A copy of the gazette is also available on request.

Article courtesy of our Business partners,  Brolink Administrators