Cops took my money,says Phoenix resident

Police allegedly kicked the wall down to gain access to Emmanuel Adetona's place of residence.

A Phoenix man has accused the police of stealing his money.

Emmanuel Adetona, a Nigerian national who has lived in the country for seven years, says the officers entered the house he shares with two others, and took R3 000 from a suitcase in his room.

Mr Adetona is a barman at Phoenix Pub. He has worked there for six years and often works late hours.

Returning from a long shift early on a Saturday, late last year, he found the door to his room had been kicked open and his clothes scattered.

The suitcase, he said, had been lying open on the corner of his bed and the money was gone.

Victor Okohi, who shares the house with Mr Adetona, said his girlfriend had been there when the police came.

“My girlfriend told me that she heard a loud bang and a lot of commotion. She opened the door and there were police claiming that they were here to look for drugs because Nigerians live here. They searched but didn’t find any drugs,” said Mr Okohi.

Mr Adetona said: “If they searched and saw that there are no drugs, why did they have to rob me by taking my money?”

Sibongile Kofi, of the Phoenix Ratepayers’ Association, said he had known Mr Adetona for a long time and he was upset to hear about what had happened.

“I have made efforts to contact the offices of IPID (Independent Police Investigative Directorate) and the office of (Community Safety MEC) Dan Plato,” said Mr Kofi.

Mr Adetona said he felt it was “a waste of time” opening a case.

“Right now, all I want is the money that was stolen from me. I know nothing will happen to these people that took it because they are police.”

However, the police say drugs were found in the house during the raid on Friday December 15 and four arrests had followed.

Table View police spokeswoman Captain Adriana said officers from the provincial task team, acting on a tip-off, had found tik and heroin at the house.

“Three thousand rand was also confiscated as part of the raid, believed to be drug money,” said Captain Chandler.

She said the provincial task team did not need a warrant to enter premises but only a signed statement or affidavit from the informer.

The police said Mr Adetona had not opened a case and Mr Kofi was ill-informed about the facts of the case.