By Luvuyo Mjekula
Two Eastern Cape men are due to appear in the Makhanda High Court on Friday, facing multiple charges, including murder and attempted murder, relating to cash-in-transit robberies in various locations between July 2021 and March 2022.
Lwando Ntiyantiya, 35, from Komani and Nkosekhaya Lloyd, 37, from East London, along with other unknown people, allegedly targeted security officers transporting cash and robbed them of money and firearms.
In July 2021, they robbed a Red Guard security officer transporting cash to a Whittlesea cash loan business from the bank and made off with more than R400 000 and the security officer’s firearm. The security officer was hit with a firearm on the head.
In another robbery in September 2021 in East London, a security officer was attacked by armed men while loading a cash box from a fast-food restaurant into a cash-in-transit vehicle. The accused allegedly confronted him and, with a firearm pointed at him, they took the money box containing a sum of more than R33 000 and his official firearm and ammunition and fled in a getaway car.
On or about 15 January 2022, near an East London liquor store, a G4S security officer was assaulted and robbed of more than R269 000 by unknown men wearing masks and carrying firearms. The security officer dropped the money box, ran to the cash-in-transit vehicle and locked the door. The two accused and their companions allegedly loaded the money box onto the back of a bakkie and drove off. However, the driver of the cash-in-transit vehicle pursued the bakkie and rear-ended it. Trying to flee, the bakkie driver apparently lost consciousness and ploughed it into a wall. He and Ntiyantiya fled, leaving the money box in the abandoned cart. They allegedly hitch-hiked back to Komani, where the driver tried to report the bakkie as robbed. He was, however, arrested.
The duo are also charged with a March 2022 cash-in-transit heist at or near Shoprite in Centane. They allegedly assaulted a G4S security officer and forcefully took from him nearly R80 000 in cash, a firearm and live ammunition.
However, following a shootout between the accused and the police, who were in the vicinity, one of the accused used a man as a human shield. He was shot and fatally wounded. The accused were also shot and injured before being arrested at the scene.
They face a total of 12 counts, such as robbery with aggravating circumstances and unlawful possession of a firearm and ammunition. If found guilty, they could be sentenced to 15 years imprisonment for each of the first four counts of robbery with aggravating circumstances; life for murder, another 15 years for each of three attempted murder counts and 15 more years for the three counts of unlawful possession of a firearm as well as another 15 years for unlawful possession of ammunition. The accused allegedly acted with a common purpose in committing the offences. Judgment is set to be delivered on Friday morning, 24 November.