Since the inception of Mi7 National Group’s Armed Response division in February last year, the company has strived to cast a security surveillance net over Pietermaritzburg and surrounding areas, ensuring our Reaction Officers have a bird’s eye view of criminal movement.
In accomplishing this feat, Mi7 has invested in class-leading Automatic Number Plate Recognition software developed by Navic.Cloud – a proudly South African company specialising in surveillance and tracking technology.
This has been integrated into our dome surveillance systems across the city – more than 40 in total – which Mi7 has installed at strategic points at no charge to the community.
This has allowed us to build a surveillance net which flags vehicles wanted in the commission of crimes anywhere in the country.
And it is yielding positive results.
In the first six weeks of 2022, Mi7 National Group has recorded almost a dozen successes relating to stolen vehicles and drug activity.
Most recently, on the morning of Monday, 07 February 2022, one of our cameras flagged a white Ford Ranger bakkie with a Gauteng registration which was reported stolen as per a Kempton Park case last month.
The vehicle was flagged entering the Northdale area.
Various Mi7 Armed Response units were immediately dispatched, and local police officers informed. The vehicle was spotted and brought to a halt on the R33. One suspect was arrested, and the vehicle impounded.
A day earlier, on 06 February 2022, the same camera flagged a vehicle suspected to have been used in drug-related crimes. The vehicle was flagged entering the Northdale area and Mi7 Reaction Officers were immediately made aware. Various units were dispatched to scout the area – the vehicle eventually spotted on Allandale Drive.
Along with members of the Mountain Rise police, Mi7 Reaction Officers brought the vehicle to a stop. After conducting a search of the vehicle, drugs were found inside. The driver of the vehicle was arrested.
On February 01, 2022, a camera in the Townhill area flagged a white Toyota Hilux. Mi7 Reaction Officers conducted a widespread search and eventually, the vehicle was spotted and brought to a halt on the corners of Townbush and Warwick Roads. It is believed the vehicle had been cloned.
About a week earlier, on January 25, a Mi7 dome surveillance camera flagged a BMW suspected to be stolen.
The vehicle was flagged entering the Northern Suburbs by the Mi7 camera located near Northway Mall.
Various Mi7 Armed Response units were immediately dispatched and sent to patrol strategic areas where the driver of the BMW 5-Series GT could have headed.
After a while, Mi7 Reaction Officers spotted the vehicle parked outside a property on Sarojini Road, Northdale. There were no occupants in the vehicle. Mountain Rise police were informed, and officers sent out. All teams present then waited for the suspects to return to the vehicle before pouncing. As soon as the suspects entered the vehicle, all units filed in, cornering off the vehicle, and preventing the occupants from making an escape. Two suspects were arrested, and the vehicle impounded. The vehicle was reported stolen as per a case opened with the police in Vereeniging, Gauteng, in March last year.
In another case, on January 18, our surveillance cameras flagged a vehicle reported stolen in the Plessislaer policing precinct in November last year. Armed Response units were immediately dispatched to track and stop the vehicle. The vehicle was brought to a halt and its two occupants apprehended. The suspects were handed over to the police for further investigation and the vehicle, a Honda, impounded.
Then, in Howick, on January 9, a white Ford Ranger had been flagged as suspicious.
According to the information, the vehicle, which was reported stolen, was last spotted on Geekie Road. Various Mi7 Armed Response units were dispatched to patrol the area for the vehicle and minutes later an Mi7 Reaction Officer spotted the vehicle on Riverview Road. The Reaction Officer pulled over the vehicle, but the driver refused questioning and took off. Mi7 Armed Response units gave chase and apprehended the driver on Robin Street.
Mi7 National Group Director Colin David said: “We are proud to see that our security interventions in the fight against crime are yielding results. Trends show that criminals oftentimes use stolen or cloned vehicles when committing offences. This technology therefore allows us to proactively spot and apprehend criminals before crimes are committed. As the company grows, we hope to expand our security net in Pietermaritzburg and surrounding areas, making sure there is nowhere left for criminals to run.”