Following the much publicised alleged theft of cash from the Egyptian
football team 10 days ago in Johannesburg, police have ruled out hotel
staff and ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œmystery womenÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â who were blamed for the robbery ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬Â and the
countryÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s ambassador has asked that media apologise for tarnishing the
teamÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s image, writes Sally Evans in The Times.
At a press briefing in Pretoria yesterday, deputy national police commissioner Andre Pruis said the completed investigation had not identified any suspects.
ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œThere was no evidence … to indicate that any women ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬Â other than authorised hotel staff ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬Â entered rooms allocated to the Egyptian delegation.ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â
Senior superintendent Brian Oppelt, who led the investigation, said that hours of CCTV footage and 28 statements had ruled out the hotel cleaning staff.
ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œThe cleaners were interviewed and underwent two polygraph tests. We have cleared them; there is no way in my mind it could have been the cleaning staff.ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â
Members of the team, who were staying at the Protea hotel in Rosebank during the Confederations Cup, reported that R19000 was stolen from their rooms during their historic 1-0 win over Italy at Ellis Park on July, 19.
After the incident, news reports quoted a ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œsenior policemanÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â as saying: ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œNo money was taken from the safe, but we have heard that they had been drinking and womanising, and the same women later robbed them.ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â
But the Egyptian embassy vehemently denied the reports and Egyptian ambassador to South Africa Dr Mohamed Zayed said at the briefing yesterday: ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…â€œAll this information is going to be corrected. If this doesnÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢t happen, we will take extra measures.ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â
Click here to read the full report, posted on thetimes.co.za.