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Cape gang crimes decrease

Gang crimes have decreased slightly as the festive season sets in.

A chart showing gang violence hotspots in Cape Town communities. Picture: Chantall Presence/EWN

CAPE TOWN - Western Cape authorities said at the weekend they were praying the province's gang hot spots will be peaceful during the holiday season.

Three men were shot and wounded during gang violence in Elsies River on Friday last week.

Last month several people, including children were injured and killed in shootings in Hanover Park.

Western Cape Community police Board Chairperson Hanif Loonat said, "This has been one of our most quiet weekends in the last three months. We hope it remains this way for the rest of the year."

But the provincial Community Safety MEC Dan Plato said it was difficult to say whether gang violence will die down these holidays.

"Police will deploy much more policemen on the ground, specifically in gang-stricken areas. We hope, looking at this time of year, it will be a quiet time."

Western Cape Police Commissioner Arno Lamoer said, "At this time of the year there is a decrease in this kind of violence. A lot of these gangsters get involved in festive season activities."

Loonat said several high profile gangsters were arrested this year.

"We have asked our detectives to make sure that bail hearings only come up in January so that we can keep these gangsters off the streets over the festive season."

Lamoer said this is not exactly true.

"We do oppose bail, but we do make requests for the courts to give us time to investigate. Sometimes the court decides to postpone hearings until we are in the New Year."