THE suspected kingpin behind the audacious OR Tambo International Airport cash heist has been arrested after posting pictures of himself with a new R5-million Lamborghini on social media.
The suspect, whose name is known to The Times, was arrested Sunday at his luxury Blue Valley Estate home in Centurion near Pretoria just hours after he posted pictures of himself and friends on social media with his new wheels.
A week later police arrested four people allegedly linked to the heist, one of whom is a policeman. The latest arrest is believed to have come after police were alerted following suspicions about the purchase of the Lamborghini.
A source close to the police investigation said officers recovered a large amount of cash when they raided the suspect’s home.
Hawks spokesman Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi said he could not confirm or deny the arrests.
A second source said the arrest followed the arrest of four other men on Saturday night. He said the first suspect, a 30-year-old security guard with Guardforce, was arrested in Tembisa, on the East Rand.
Guardforce was in charge of escorting the money to SAA flight 294 when it was stolen last week.
The source said the Guardforce guard worked at the vault where the money had been stored shortly before it was transferred to the aircraft.
The second arrest, of a 39-year old G4S security guard, occurred at Elandsfontein shortly afterwards, said the source. G4S was responsible for escorting the Guardforce employees in charge of the money.
“A Zimbabwean national, who is alleged to have cloned the police vehicles used in the heist, was arrested in Norkem Park. The fifth person arrested is also a guard, who is responsible for perimeter duties at the airport,” the source said. It is not clear who this guard was employed by.
On Tuesday acting national police boss Lieutenant-General Khomotso Phahlane announced the arrest of the four initial suspects.
Two have already appeared before the Kempton Park Magistrate’s Court and face armed robbery charges.
They are expected to appear in court again later this week.
The heist has also resulted in five lieutenant-colonels being transferred from the airport, according to the Sunday Times.
Police are yet to confirm if some of the money has been recovered and are reportedly probing the exact amount stolen, the currency and the intended destination.
Investigations are continuing.
By GRAEME HOSKEN and LOYISO SIDIMBA