Www.Sabc news.Muggers pose as holy men to rob students.com gauteng
Muggers pose as holy men to rob students
Scam artists posing as prophets have begun targeting students, believing they are easy targets to dupe.
Johannesburg Central, Hillbrow, and Jeppe police stations have all confirmed cases of students being robbed by self-professed prophets who pose as redeemers to their vulnerable victims.
Detectives are investigating several cases of theft by false pretenses, where students are the primary targets.
Nthabiseng Thupi is the latest victim. The 18-year-old student from the University of Johannesburg said her phone and four laptops belonging to her friends had been stolen.
Thupi, a first-year student in chemistry and mathematics, said she met an old man last Tuesday who stopped her and asked for directions.
“I have never met the man before. But he knew my name, surname and even told me the colour of my underwear that had gone missing.
“I believed him,” she said.
She said the old man was working alongside an old lady, who approached them while he was busy prophesying.
“You would think that the two people were old and would not hurt you, but they were both crooks,” she said.
She said the two took her to a supermarket and they asked her to buy salt and still water so that they could pray for her.
After she went inside, the elderly pair made off with her valuables.
“When I came out of the shop, they were not there. Gone,” she said.
Thupi said when she went to the Johannesburg Central police station to report the case she met another student from another institution who was also opening a case with similar allegations.
Johannesburg Central police spokesman Captain Xoli Mbele confirmed the incidents.
Captain Mbele said the modus operandi is the same. “False prophets will stop a student and ask her if she knows someone by the name of so and so.”
The scam then takes a predictable turn.
“He will take a victim with a car driven by his accomplices,” said Mbele.
Hillbrow police spokesman Sergeant Mduduzi Zondo appealed to victims of the fake prophets to report the crime at their nearest police station.
Jeppe police spokesman Captain Richard Munyai said : “We have cases at the station where students were robbed of their belongings by the fake prophets.
Image source: SABC
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