On Atlas road in Boksburg, Johannesburg, two cash-in-transit vans were bombed on Thursday morning.
The smoke from the explosions that ripped apart the GS4 cash vans spewed into the air, and then gunshots were heard firing towards the van. It looked like something from a move-scene.
Behind the second damaged cash van was an abandoned construction truck which ended up in the crossfire as guards exchanged gunfire with the robbers.
The cash vans were targeted by several gunmen wielding assault rifles at 9:30 am, who were travelling in an SUV and other vehicles. Around 10 suspects exchanged fire with the GS4, and two of the four guards were injured, while some motorists recorded the shootout.
Police, using a helicopter, pursued the suspects as they sped away. Some of the gang were cornered and captured at George Goch hostel in Johannesburg.
Back at the scene where the heist happened, banknotes flew about in the wind, prompting forensic investigators to collect the scattering cash. Some young men managed to sneak onto the crime scene, but the police managed to stop them and recover some of the cash they took.
The bomb squad pored over the scene. According to TimesLive, the drama continued and one of the GS4 guards sat on the ground looking totally disoriented.
The police closed the M2 West towards Johannesburg CBD for hours as they tried to contain all roads leading to the hostel. At the entrance of the George Goch hostel, police searched for more suspects.
"They came in a lot cars‚ got some people and left‚" said one of the residents‚ describing how police had swooped on the fleeing gang.
Police spokesperson Captain Mavela Masondo said the cash-in-transit heists were becoming a serious problem for the police in Gauteng.
Police have arrested at least five suspects, recovered a suspected getaway vehicle and a rifle. Paramedics said at least eight people, two of them bystanders, were injured.
However, one of the suspects that have been arrested since yesterday, is believed to be a cop. At the moment the name of the officer is unknown but he was apparently part of a sector team in Sundra, Mpumalanga.
Captain Mavela Masondo could not immediately confirm that one of the suspects was an officer. Masondo also said that at the time the robbers travelled in three different cars.
"They shot at the two G4S vans and then there was an exchange of fire between them and the security officers. Two security officers were shot in the process," Masondo added.
Police have recovered two of the vehicles, an R4 rifle and some of the money.
We will keep you updated once we know who the police officer is – who is behind the Boksburg heist.