South Africa: Police have launched an investigation in Malipsdrift in Limpopo after five women were allegedly gang-raped, one man was shot and wounded and six others assaulted by a group of gun-wielding suspects.
The suspects allegedly stormed into two funeral parlours on the R37 early on Sunday morning.
According to police, two female friends were on their way to visit a boyfriend working at a funeral parlour. They were walking on the R37 when they were accosted by six men who grabbed them.
They were taken to the first mortuary where the suspects shot and injured one employee, said Limpopo police spokesperson Brig Motlafela Mojapelo.
The men proceeded to the next mortuary and on arrival found three female and six male employees.
“All six males were severely assaulted by the suspects, allegedly using the butts of their firearms, until they fell unconscious. All five females were gang-raped and robbed of their cellphones and other belongings. The suspects thereafter took an undisclosed amount of money from the safe and fled the scene,” he said.
Mojapelo said the victims were discovered by another employee reporting for duty and police were alerted.
“On arrival at the scene they found the badly injured victims. Some female victims were also assaulted. The victims were transported to the hospital for medical treatment,” he said.
Limpopo provincial commissioner Lt-Gen Thembi Hadebe activated a team of investigators to hunt for the suspects.
“ I urge community members to come forward with information to assist the police in cracking these cases as speedily as possible,” said Hadebe.
Five counts of rape, three counts of kidnapping, attempted murder and business robbery have been opened and police investigations are unfolding.