WATCH | Rolex gang strikes in Sandton, 'hijacks' getaway car as bullets fly

A motorist was stripped of his Rolex watch in broad daylight, allegedly by an armed gang whose members then became involved in a shootout as they hijacked a getaway car in Sandton, Johannesburg.

The incident was captured on video from an adjacent building on Thursday.

“Preliminary investigations reveal that the driver of a black Mercedes-Benz was forced to stop his car after a black Ford Fiesta drove into it,” said police spokesperson Capt Kay Makhubele.

“Three suspects allegedly alighted from the Ford Fiesta and robbed him of his Rolex watch. The suspects allegedly abandoned their car and attempted to hijack a BMW, during which time a shootout ensued between the owner of the BMW and the suspects,” he added. 

After the botched first hijacking, the suspects managed to hijack a VW Polo, which was later found abandoned a few kilometres from the scene, Makhubele said.  

The 44-second long video clip shows at least three people, dressed in black, fleeing from a black vehicle.

Running along the road, they approach an unsuspecting motorist, forcing the Polo to stop.

“Drive, drive, drive,” the person shooting the video is heard shouting out.

One of the suspects is seen repeatedly banging onto the passenger window in an attempt to break it. Eventually, they get into the Polo.

Then, 11 gunshots ring out.

This is the latest in a string of hits involving Rolex watches.

In September, a video surfaced of two knife-wielding thieves attacking a 52-year-old man, robbing him of his watch as he sat inside a McDonald’s restaurant in Boksburg. He sustained minor injuries.

Just weeks before that, an armed gang attacked a jewellery store at the Mall of Africa in Midrand. Rolex watches were among the loot that was taken.

Two months ago, three men, believed to have been part of what is the dubbed the “Rolex gang”, was were nabbed in Sandton.

They were arrested nabbed shortly after they reportedly spotted a victim and were ready to pounce. The group was intercepted by police. 

The three were said to be repeat offenders. Two of them were out on parole for serious crimes and the third was previously sentenced to 20 years for armed robbery. The third suspect was out on bail pending an appeal against his sentence.

After the latest incident, police opened a case of robbery, attempted hijacking and hijacking.