VIOLENT ROBBERIES RISE

  • 21st May 2003
  • 2003
  • // Display comment count + link

Three masked men attacked McDonald’s Restaurant in down town Suva in the early hours of Monday morning and stole close to $9,000 in cash.

The incident took place less than a month after the fast-food chain’s Raiwaqa outlet was robbed.

Acting Police spokesman, Sergeant Isikeli Raisuni said the three hired a taxi from Muairewa Taxi stand, went to Tamavua where they beat the driver and locked him in the boot of the taxi.

They then made their way to McDonald’s, got in through the windows and robbed the staff at knifepoint. The three escaped in the stolen taxi, which was later found abandoned in Vatuwaqa.

McDonald’s executive Craig McElrath said he would comment after receiving reports of the police investigations.

In yet another case a Hanson’s Supermarket delivery truck was robbed when the driver was having lunch.

The assailants attacked the driver and delivery boy with iron rods and took $8,000 cash before escaping.

The last week or two has seen a significant increase in violent robberies. Police statistics show that in the past four years (1999-2002) there were 2994 robberies with violence.

Only 30 % or 909 of these robberies have been solved and of the $5.7 million worth of property involved only 11% or $627,477 has been recovered.

Between December last year and January this year, 40 robberies have been reported that involved the use of weapons.

Meanwhile, Fiji visitors Bureau chief executive Viliame Gavoka called on the nation to unite in the fight against crime and stop depending on the police force only.