Fake matric certificates trio held

2010-10-27 00:00

THREE suspects aged between 27 and 57 years were arrested in Pine­town for selling fraudulent matric certificates the same day the class of 2010 sat for their final grade 12 examinations around the country.

According to provincial police spokesperson Colonel Jay Naicker, the arrests happened after SA Police Force detectives from Pinetown received information on Monday about a gang that was selling “matric certificates” in the Pinetown CBD.

Naicker said that according to the information, the prospective “matriculant” would only need to supply an identity number to obtain a fake matric certificate.

The certificate would be issued on the same day for R800.

Naicker said that after receiving the information, detectives posing as prospective matriculants contacted the leader of the gang and furnished him with three sets of random numbers as identity numbers.

The members then met two men at a fast-food outlet in the Pinetown CBD.

“The two suspects introduced themselves to the SAPF members and handed over a brown envelope with three laminated certificates as ordered.

“After the exchange of certificates and the cash, the two men were arrested on the spot for fraud and further police investigation led to the arrest of a third man in the Pinetown CBD,” Naicker said

He said the third suspect was found in possession of 10 fraudulent matric certificates already endorsed with personal particulars and subject symbols.

The suspects are in police custody and will appear in the Pinetown Magistrate’s Court soon.

Naicker said two USB memory sticks and a memory card that are thought to have been used to generate the fraudulent certificates were confiscated.

“The certificates confiscated have letterheads and insignias that look authentic. We wish to warn members of the public not to fall into the trap of purchasing these fraudulent certificates because they will also face similar charges when they are caught out,” Naicker said.

The provincial Education Department was not immediately available for comment.

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