Prostitutes reportedly all packed their bags and left the infamous bushes next to Checkers Hyper along Rondebult Road, thanks to the Leeuwpoort housing development project.
The piece of land which was being used by prostitutes to host their clients has been cleared of the bushes to make way for the mega housing development in the city.
Thousands of residential units will be built in the area as part of the Ekurhuleni metro’s efforts to address housing backlog in the city.
Sex in public and robberies used to be daily occurrences in the area. These used to happen in broad daylight and police crackdowns proved ineffective in solving the problems associated with prostitution in the area. The area became home to many illegal activities, including robberies, rapes, murders and drug trades.
The Boksburg police said they have, for years, struggled to get the bushes cleared and the prostitutes removed from the area.
“We have, in the past, conducted patrols, operations and made arrests, but the prostitutes were clearly hell-bent on their trade.
“To see the overgrown trees being removed was a huge relief to us, as the bushes were being used by criminals as a hideout, and prostitutes used it to hide the makeshift shelters they used to serve their clients,” said Ledwaba.
Ledwaba further stated that the police have, for the last couple of years, had running battles against the prostitutes and robbers operating in the area, but the bushes and trenches worked in the offenders’ favour whenever a blitz was conducted.
“We have in the past managed to arrest some of them (the prostitutes) and kept them in the holding cells for the weekend.
“That, however, failed to deter them from their illegal activities. When released they would go straight to their spot to continue their illegal businesses,” said Boksburg SAPS spokesperson Ntsako Ledwaba.
The police said the prostitutes were so brazen that they even stood half-naked, which is their daily dress code for their trade, next to the busy Rondebult Road even in broad daylight apparently to entice motorists passing by.
Of course, this is the very same spot where Edwin Tshuma, a Midrand man who hailed from Zimbabwe, was robbed and killed after having a quick round of sex with a prostitute in the bushes, in March 2015.
Tshuma reportedly paid one of the prostitutes R10 for sex but got more than he had bargained for when he was attacked by four robbers after he had satisfied his sexual urges.
He had parked his vehicle at the shopping centre along Rondebult Road before he went to the nearby bushes with the prostitute. After a steamy romp, the hoodlums emerged and stabbed him to death before stealing his valuable belongings.
Three men, aged 20, 28 and 29, were subsequently arrested and charged with the murder and robbery.
In a similar bizarre incident, paramedics treated and rushed a severely wounded man to Tambo Memorial Hospital on March 26, after he was stabbed by robbers after having sex with a prostitute in the bushes.
The complainant, however, decided not to open a case and the motive for the stabbing remained unknown.
According to a police officer, who asked to remain anonymous, although prostitutes were being arrested on a regular basis, they returned to their trade because of the low fines imposed on offenders. – @FaniFLK