Friday, January 27, 2023

Indian national kidnapped at Johannesburg's OR Tambo International Airport Jan. 20 rescued by security services on Jan. 23

On Jan. 23, South African police rescued an Indian businessman who had been kidnapped at Johannesburg's OR Tambo International Airport (JNB). The victim was abducted upon his arrival at JNB on Jan. 20 with the kidnappers demanding a ransom from his family. Investigators believe the individual had been lured to the country by an alleged crime syndicate. Police forces traced the suspects to Johannesburg's Fordsburg suburb where the rescue operation took place; four men were arrested in connection with the kidnapping. This is the first reported kidnapping at OR Tambo International since 2020.

Kidnapping for ransom and extortion is an increasing concern in South Africa, particularly in Gauteng Province. Between July and September 2022, over 3,600 kidnappings were reported nationwide; of these, approximately 2,000 were in Gauteng. The number of kidnappings has risen in all provinces, except Limpopo, during that period. Due to ongoing socio-economic issues, crime rates will likely escalate in the medium term.

Kidnappings in South Africa are mostly related to robberies, hijackings, or rapes; kidnapping for ransom accounted for around 5 percent of the cases nationwide in 2022. The threat is higher for foreigners - especially those of Indian, Chinese, or Bangladeshi origin - or persons who publicly display wealth. Security forces are generally under-resourced and have been unable to stem rising crime rates.

27/01/23 Crisis24

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