Guns, stolen goods seized in raids following Soweto unrest

Goods stolen during looting of foreign-owned shops, including five branded fridges and deep freezers, have been recovered during raids in Soweto, Gauteng police said on Sunday.

In addition, 22 guns were seized as increased police deployments zeroed in on several suspects, including three foreign nationals, for the possession of unlicensed firearms.

Authorities were conducting operations and monitoring acts of violence directed at foreign-owned shops when they followed up on information about foreign nationals who owned small businesses suspected to be in possession of unlicensed firearms, police spokesperson Colonel Lungelo Dlamini said on Sunday.

"Two were arrested in Orange Farm and the other at Jabulani. Other suspects found in possession of firearms were arrested in Hillbrow, Eden Park, Moroka, Sebokeng, Ga-Rankuwa, Douglasdale, Pretoria West and Eldorado Park," he said.

"All the firearms will be taken for ballistic examination to establish if they were not used to commit serious and violent crimes."

The suspects are expected to appear in various magistrate’s courts on Monday.Violence broke out during protests in White City, Soweto on Wednesday afternoon, sparked by allegations that shop owners sold expired food to the public.

Rubber bullets and tear gas were fired to disperse crowds in different shops in the area.

The chaos had spread to other townships across Gauteng by Wednesday evening.

The rioting and looting resulted in the deaths of four people, police had confirmed.

All was quieter in Soweto over the weekend. Dlamini told News24 on Saturday that some foreign-owned shops were still closed, but others were opening for business.