Past in Perspective

“A white man could do anything he wants today.”

–Andre Stander

It was in 1977 that Andre Stander (1946–1984), a high-flying policeman and the son of Major General Frans Stander, an esteemed and celebrated figure in the South African Prison Service, decided to rob his first bank in Durban, South Africa. However, it would later be the audacity with which Stander carried out his robberies that differentiated him from other such contemporaries as Jacques Mesrine (another notable bank robber): on occasion, Stander would commit a bank robbery on his lunch break and return to the scene of the crime as the lead investigating officer.

Having stolen approximately 100,000 South African Rand between 1977 and 1980, as well as robbing no fewer than 25 banks, Stander was arrested and sentenced to 75 years (which later became an actual sentence of 17 years) in prison.

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