Free State farmers are having another busy weekend after two farm attacks have been averted but several cattle slaughter has been reported.
In addition, suspects who allegedly broke into a barn on a farm outside Bethlehem last week were arrested.
Boet Wessels, security representative for Free State Agriculture (FSA) in the Ventersburg area, says five armed attackers overpowered Mike van Rensburg’s night watch on Sunday at about 21:00 on the farm Beginsel.
The guard managed to sound the alarm and Van Rensburg called for help.
According to Wessels, farmers in the area were on the scene very quickly and roads were blocked.
“At exactly the same time of the attack, cattle thieves struck another farm near the N1 and also in the Ventersburg area.”
Wessels said the farmer’s security guard could also call for help. The cattle thieves appear to be planning to rob a large number of cattle.
He says there have also been livestock slaughters in the area.
Coenraad van der Westhuizen, a farmer in the Bethlehem district, woke up at around 03:30 on Saturday when he heard noises on his farmyard.
Junior Ferreira, his brother-in-law, says Van der Westhuizen did not leave the house, but watched the men through a window.
“They were already through the security fence and against the house. One of the men moved into an outdoor light spot and my brother-in-law saw that he was armed. “
Ferreira says his brother-in-law fired a shot that caused the men to flee.
Van der Westhuizen pressed an emergency button and farmers in the area responded to his emergency call.
“The community searched for the attackers for hours, but no one was captured,” Ferreira says.
In another incident in the Bethlehem area, farmers arrested five men who allegedly broke into a farm on Thursday and stole tools.
Brig. Police spokesperson Motantsi Makhele said local farmers caught the men and found some of the stolen goods in a vehicle.
The men will appear in court in Bethlehem on Tuesday on, among other things, charges of burglary at a business.
Free State farmers repelled two separate farm attacks last month, one near Tweespruit and one near Zastron, and shot dead some of their attackers.