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Burundian arrested for trying 'dirty money' scam on businessman

By unknown | Jun 06, 2008 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Riot Hlatshwayo

Riot Hlatshwayo

A Burundian national was arrested in Mpumalanga after he allegedly tried to rob a businessman of thousands of rands by claiming to have a lot of money that needed to be cleaned with a special chemical.

Mike Mazibuko, owner of TMM Office automation in Nelspruit, said he was in his shop when the man walked in on Friday last week.

The man told him he had money meant for soldiers in Burundi but it had been dyed for security reasons.

He claimed he could clean the money - provided Mazibuko gave him R40000 to buy the stain-removing chemical.

"He told me that we would share the money afterwards," Mazibuko said. "But then I decided to set a trap for him by playing along until we reached a place where he could be arrested."

The man later asked Mazibuko to give him R3000 in cash so that he could pay for his accommodation at the Nelspruit Town Lodge while arrangements for buying the chemicals were being made.

Mazibuko told the man that he had no cash on him since he used bank cards.

The man then asked for R100 to bribe the security guards at the lodge so that he could go in to change his clothes and take the dirty money from a safe.

He went away and returned with two boxes in which he claimed the dirty money that had to be cleaned was stashed.

"He produced two notes from a box," Mazibuko said. "They were very dirty and he used a liquid to clean them. I later realised they were R100 and R50 notes.

"He gave them to me to have the bank check if they were authentic. I did and found that they were real notes."

The man then sealed the two boxes with masking tape and left them behind so he and Mazibuko could meet yesterday morning to finalise the deal.

Mazibuko called a friend, Mandla Madlazi, to be present when the man arrived yesterday.

When the man got there Madlazi told him that he had all the money he needed to buy the chemical and asked him to accompany him to the shop's safe with his "dirty money".

Madlazi then called the police.

Mpumalanga police's organised crime unit confirmed the arrest and warned people to be careful about fraudsters.

"We warn the community that there are a number of fraudsters out there, some of whom will tell you that your money will multiply if you give them yours ... but money does not give birth," the police said.


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