Fake certificates couple arrested

A COUPLE arrested for dealing in fake certificates, including matric certificates, have been granted bail by the Ogies magistrate's court.

Eric Ndlovu, 36, and Sonto Masango, 20, both of Ogies in Mpumalanga, were arrested last Wednesday for illegally producing certificates and selling them to the public for R300 each.

The two appeared in court on Friday. Ndlovu and Masango were granted R5000 and R2500 bail respectively.

Police got a tip-off about the illegal business taking place at an office at the Chapman Building in Ogies.

They set a trap by sending two police officers to purchase matric certificates on Tuesday.

They were welcomed by Masango who told them that she needed copies of their identity documents, a list of subjects they wanted on the certificates and R300 in cash.

They were told to return the following day to collect their certificates.

Captain Leonard Hlathi of the Mpumalanga organised crime unit said the officers returned and "indeed they got their certificates as promised".

The woman did not suspect anything and after receiving the certificates, the officers immediately identified themselves and arrested her.

She led the police to Ndlovu, owner of the business, and he too was arrested.

During follow-up investigations, police visited the owner's house and confiscated a laptop, a colour printer and an Eskom bag containing alleged fraudulent documents, Hlathi said.

They later went back to Ndlovu's office and seized a computer and two cellphones.

There they also found fake certificates that bore the logos of the companies Tavistock Colliery, Sandvik Colliery and Global Training Centre.

Hlathi appealed to companies in the province to verify the authenticity of the certificates submitted by workers.

The case was postponed for further investigation and the accused will appear in court again on August 24.