Hawks nab fake Cape Town brigadier and cops warn of bogus KZN captain
A 35-year-old former police reservist in the Western Cape has been arrested by the Hawks on charges of fraud and corruption for cheating victims of crime out of thousands of rands while posing as a brigadier.
Several victims in Paarl, Worcester, Robertson and Montague allegedly paid amounts ranging from R4,500 to R14,000 to the reservist in the belief she would expedite investigations into cases they had reported to the police.
Capt Philani Nkwalase said the imposter allegedly "used her knowledge of police processes and procedures and impersonated a senior Hawks official to solicit money from various victims for police favours".
The Hawks' serious corruption investigation team arrested the reservist in Goodwood on Thursday soon after she appeared in court in a separate fraud matter. She was granted bail in that matter and was expected to appear at the Paarl magistrate's court on Friday to face fraud and corruption charges related to the Hawks' probe.
KwaZulu-Natal police on Friday also issued a warning about a bogus cop.
Col Thembeka Mbhele said KZN police have been receiving a number of complaints about a man who calls himself Captain Khumalo.
The bogus captain phones people who have opened criminal cases, claiming that he has recovered their stolen vehicles or stock.
"He will then request that the complainant to deposit a certain amount of money into various accounts. He promises complainants that he will arrange for the stolen items to be returned to them after receiving the requested money.
"He is also known to call relatives of arrested persons with a promise to speak to prosecutors and arrange bail for suspects, if he is paid a certain sum of money," said Mbhele.
Mbhele said the correct procedure was that if stolen goods were recovered, the investigating officers would contact the complainants.
"Complainants will always be requested to come to a police station with their identify documents to claim recovered goods. Police will not request cash for any reason during the course of an investigation."