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Nam car thieves are opportunistic - Ndeitunga

by Rodney Pienaar

Namibian Police Lieutenant General Sebastian Ndeitunga has said cases of vehicle theft are because some car owners are careless.

He told The Villager that there was no pattern to indicate or suggest that it is a syndicate.

 Motor vehicle theft is not that common in the country.

“The series of motor vehicle theft that was reported is because owners of the vehicles leave them unattended while the key is in the ignition,” Ndeitunga explained.

He also told The Villager that the police recently reported the case of a car stolen from a car wash, by false pretence.

The owner of the vehicle left the car at a car wash, after which the car wash attendee was taken advantage of by a suspect who approached the car wash and said that the owner would be unable to pick up the vehicle personally and therefore it must be given to him (suspect).

“This worker at the carwash agreed to hand over the keys to the criminal after he was given a payment of the services provided and the criminal then drove off with the vehicle,” Ndeitunga narrates.

The police said that vehicles reported stolen during this year have already been recovered and returned to their owners.

Ndeitunga said that most of the car stolen in the city is later discovered abandoned in areas such as Ombili and Havana.

“These vehicles that have been recovered are all because of the assistance of the members of the public. Sometimes criminals just make use of the opportunity they get because of the carelessness of vehicle owners,” Ndeitunga cautioned. 

He adds that if car owners do not properly lock their vehicles when they run errands in highly populated areas, they risk their cars being broken into and their possessions being stolen.

“Theft of motor vehicles in our country is not as high as it is in South Africa. If it were a syndicate, we would have detected it already this is just random theft of vehicles by culprits that know their way around Windhoek and the surrounding areas.

“If an illegal trade was being done at the border of Angola or in Angola than we would have apprehended the suspect a long time ago as there are many police roadblocks on the way to the Angolan border post,” Ndeitunga assured.

Ndeitunga also said the police has made progress motor vehicle theft cases and will be making arrests.“The progress made cannot be shared with the media at this stage, we will inform the public after we have made arrests,” he said.