Cape Town underworld breakthrough as suspected club gunman arrested

21-year-old Naeem Harris faces two counts of attempted murder

Cape Town underworld breakthrough as suspected club gunman arrested

4 September 2017

Cape Town – A major breakthrough has been made in underworld investigations, with a Mitchells Plain resident appearing in court for allegedly shooting a patron and DJ outside a Cape Town nightclub in May.

Naeem Harris, 21, of Portlands, appeared in the Cape Town Magistrate’s Court on Monday for the shooting which happened just outside Coco nightclub on May 5, 2017.

News24 understands that Harris was allegedly standing outside the establishment when he shot towards it.

On Monday, Western Cape Hawks spokesperson Captain Lloyd Ramovha said their serious organised crime unit had arrested Harris on Thursday.

He faces two counts of attempted murder.

"Two victims, including a DJ and a patron, were shot and wounded when the suspect opened fire at the revellers just after midnight," Ramovha said.

'Underworld turf war'

"The incident is reportedly linked to an apparent ongoing clubs security turf war in Cape Town and surrounding areas."

Harris remains in custody and is expected back in the dock next week.

The Coco shooting unfolded less than a month after two men were wounded in Café Caprice in Camps Bay on April 17.

Three suspects were initially arrested for the Café Caprice shooting, but were later released from custody.

Underworld violence started surging in Cape Town late last year when a new grouping of men, said to be headed by notorious businessman Nafiz Modack, started taking control of nightclub security from a more established grouping.

This sparked a series of shootings and scuffles.

Gang shootings around Cape Town have also been linked to the nightclub security power struggle.

Firearms probed and seized

As part of an intense investigation into underworld violence, guns are being focused on.

Ramovha said that on Wednesday, August 30, 50 firearms had been seized from the Bellville offices of a security company, Thorburn Security Solutions, because it had allegedly not complied with private security regulations.

This followed an inspection at the Stellenbosch offices of Thorburn Armed Response – another name the company goes by – two days earlier.

On July 12, police seized six shotguns and ammunition from a Bellville security company, Skhosana Maponyane Hall Phillips and Khumalo, trading as The Security Group (TSG).

TSG is linked to the notorious bouncer industry.

In an effort to get the weapons back, TSG approached the Western Cape High Court in August for an urgent order forcing the police to return the firearms. The application was unsuccessful.

Court papers in the matter said that TSG allegedly used a list of registered guards it never employed to get several shotguns, which now form part of a high-level investigation into nightclub violence and shootings.

The investigation into TSG forms part of the broader probe into the underworld.