Seven Robbers Shot Dead in South Africa; Police Believe They Got 'Kingpin'

Seven robbers were shot dead in South Africa on Saturday by police when they attempted to rob a cash depot in Johannesburg. Another nine people who were part of the group were also injured.

"We believe we got the kingpin down. We are convinced that we got all the robbers – dead or arrested," Paul Ramaloko, spokesperson for the police unit called Hawks, told Reuters.

According to South Africa's, the robbers were trying to steal money from Protea Coin cash compound west of Johannesburg around 5 p.m. local time. The special police unit called Hawks stopped the group of 20 armed robbers, Ramaloko, who is the captain of the Hawks, informed news

"After they were cornered, they shot at the Hawks; upon retaliation seven were fatally shot. Nine were injured and hospitalized."

The police also confiscated 11 vehicles with firearms inside.

South Africa, while the richest country in Africa in terms of GDP, has a high unemployment rate – estimated at 25 percent by the CIA World Factbook for 2011. The unemployment rate for youth ages 15 to 24 is about 48.2 percent and there is a high crime rate, including robbery.