OUT LGBT Well-being applauds the SAPS for making a breakthrough in the attacks against queer men targeted via dating apps like Grindr.
The SAPS said in a statement that it had arrested four men in connection with an incident involving a 26-year-old man.
After the individual chatted with one of the suspects on a dating app, he was lured to an area where he was hijacked, kidnapped and robbed of his personal belongings, including bank cards.
Police were able to free the victim and arrested the suspects, who were possession of his belongings, in a Johannesburg restaurants.
“We and the broader LGBTIQ+ community welcome these arrests,” says Lerato Phalakatshela, Human Rights Manager at OUT LGBT Well-being.
“This has been a long time coming. We hope it will send out a message to others who might be committing these horrible crimes against the community.
“We also thank the SAPS and all who played a part in making this happen and call on the police to continue working with us to solve and address other crimes that are targeted at the LGBTIQ+ community.”
He, however, adds a note of caution. “The LGBTIQ+ community should not be complacent and must remain alert when using dating apps as it is very possible that the four alleged suspects may not be the only individuals committing these crimes in Gauteng,” says Phalakatshela.
OUT urges any victims of the Grindr gang or gangs to come forward by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org to help ensure that everyone involved in these attacks faces justice (your personal information will remain confidential if you so wish).