The Police arrested seven suspects in connection with housebreaking and the possession of stolen property in Knysna.
“All these suspects are scheduled to appear in the Knysna Magistrates’ Court after they were found in possession of furniture suspected to be taken from one of the houses destroyed in the Knysna fires,” Capt Malcolm Pojie, spokesperson for the Southern Cape Police, said this morning.
According to Pojie the suspects, between the ages of 40 and 68 years old, are detained at the Knysna Police holding cells.
Investigation revealed that furniture to the value of about R80 000 was stolen from a house in Brenton-On-Sea.
Pojie also said the Knysna Police has reinforced deployment to the effected areas in Knysna to assist with the search of possible missing or lost and unaccounted relatives of victims of the fires. Forensic and rescue dogs will be deployed in these areas.
“ A 70 year old woman was reported missing from her Bergvallei home near Karatara in the early hours this morning. She was found unharmed by members of the Tsitsikamma K-9 at a friend’s house in Barrington.
“ We appeal to any effected families and residents to please call the Knysna SAPS at 044 302 6687 or the 08600 10111.”
Five people died in the Knysna and Plettenberg Bay fires in three separate incidents.
The bodies of Tony (30), Mandy (28) and Michael Johnston (7) were found by members of the the Attaqua K9 Dog Unit on Wednesday at 11:50, approximately 50 m from their home in Elandskraal.
The body of Catherine Matope (4) was found next to a dam in Narnia Village, Welbedacht at about 9:00 on Thursday.
“This morning the fifth casualty was reported after a volunteer firefighter succumbed to smoke inhalation and severe burns in the George Medi-Clinic,” Pojie said.
Bradley Richardson(24) was a member of a group of volunteers assisting with rescue operations between Plettenberg Bay and Knysna. He was a volunteer with the Southern Cape Fire Protection Association from Plettenberg Bay.