Police have made a breakthrough in the cases of three people who were attacked in July and August, allegedly while taking Uber rides.
On 16 July, a woman was attacked and raped after getting into what she thought was an Uber taxi in Fourways, Johannesburg. A case of rape, kidnapping, and robbery was opened afterwards.
In August, it was reported that a couple was attacked after ordering an Uber ride home via the service’s mobile app from the Movida nightclub in Sunninghill in the early morning hours.
A friend said that the couple made frequent use of the Uber app and paid attention to the details, including the type of vehicle and driver, as provided by the app.
Shortly after departing, two men hiding in the boot pushed the back seats forward and got into the front of the car and stabbed the man while his girlfriend was bundled into the boot. She was also allegedly raped. The incident happened on the William Nicol Drive off-ramp.
Initially police spokesman Lungelo Dlamini said the attack did not involve an Uber taxi.
“We are investigating it, but it wasn’t an Uber taxi. It was a metered taxi,” Dlamini said in August.
However, he has now confirmed that the attacks did indeed involve an Uber vehicle with two suspects, one of which is a former Uber employee, being arrested.
“Police have also launched a manhunt for a third suspect who is still at large,” Dlamini said.
One of the suspects was arrested in Mpumalanga and the other in Germiston, Gauteng. The arrests were made following investigation by members of the Gauteng family violence, child protection and sexual offences unit.
According to police, it is still unknown whether there were more victims involved in similar attacks in the area.
The two suspects are due to appear in the Randburg magistrates court on Monday.