PLEASE NOTE:

MyNews24 is a user-generated section of News24.com. The stories here come from users.

 
Manfred Phesto
 
Comments: 21
Article views: 3631
 
 
Latest Badges:

 
View all Manfred Phesto's badges.
 

Cape Town "Emergency" Street Numbers Scam

15 April 2014, 10:53
Yesterday I had an encounter with a con-artist. I have posted this story for the simple reason that this scam has not (as far as I can tell) been documented in this country before. When I searched for information on it, I found examples from other countries, but none from South Africa. 

The scam works as follows: he rings your doorbell and claims to be a representative of a company performing the admirable and useful service of re-painting the so-called "emergency numbers" on the pavement outside your property. This is, in fact, on council property - and the property owner/occupant has no responsibility for its maintenance. 

For this service, he charges R150 - which is in and of itself ridiculous given the amount of time and paint required. He claimed the paint was "special water-resistant paint".

In any event, he painted several numbers along my street and fleeced the residents without a problem - until he got to me.

He also painted the number outside my property, and when he rang the bell to claim his fee, I asked him who he worked for. He could not / would not tell me. I asked him his name, which he likewise refused to provide. I asked him for any form of identification whatsoever. He had none.

The one and only piece of evidence he was able to provide was a laminated photo of a street number he had apparently restored. He could provide me with nothing else, other than the fact that he had performed this service for several of my neighbours and also the former occupants of my home. 

Naturally, this aroused my suspicions - and a certain, shall we say, righteous fury. I rushed out with a trusted associate of mine and took his photo and one of his number plate. I then called the police - who responded promptly. Strangely enough, the man stuck around - which fact I presume was due to two key factors. Firstly, he was happily fleecing the whole street with not the slightest opposition, and secondly, although his actions were decidedly sketchy, there was nothing absolutely illegal about them (aside, perhaps, from vanadalizing city property).

He claimed to have permission from council to provide the service - but could provide no evidence to support this claim. I asked him - in front of the officers - what his name was (he mumbled something which sounded like "Ken" or "Kev"), and the name of his firm. I asked him if he was registered for VAT. I asked him to to provide me with the information anybody can reasonably expect when paying for a service rendered. I asked him for an invoice. He could provide me with none of these things, and claimed to have been robbed when asked for I.D. by the cops. 

I agreed to abide by the judgement of the officers present, and they told me that I was under no obligation to pay this mysterious person until he could provide me with the relevant documentation. He said he would be back today with these, but (not surprisingly) he has not returned.  

I have attached (separately - come on News24!) his photo, and welcome any and all comments, additional information, and encourage any journalist who reads this to get council's take on the matter. 
The originals:
- http://curbnumberpro.com/student-curb-painting-service-is-it-real-or-a-scam/
- http://noevalleysf.blogspot.com/2011/01/scam-alert-curb-number-painters-target.html
- http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/neighborhood-watch-curb-scam-78766
- http://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/elderly-targeted-as-curb-painting-scam-resurfaces-20130702-2p8z6.html
- http://forums.whirlpool.net.au/archive/1695528
- http://richmondsfblog.com/2012/08/16/beware-the-illegal-curb-painting-scam-its-hitting-the-outer-richmond/

Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.
 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
21 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Dineo Malakoane
Oscar Pistorius: Unjust Justice

I am absolutely disappointed at the 5yr sentence that Oscar received. I believe that Gerrie Nel did a brilliant job and Judge Masipa should have found him guilty of murder in the first place.  Read more...

5 comments 206 views
Submitted by
Jeff Woodworth
Jail sentence of Oscar

The count 1 of culpable homicide the sentence of 5 years is not appropriate, at least 10 years max, with 5 years suspended sentence, this will sent a message to all who takes the life of another. Read more...

1 comments 39 views
Submitted by
tlg
Oscar Pistorius's sentence: Was j...

The Oscar Pistorius trial is now complete, tried, convicted and sentenced, BUT was justice served? Read more...

3 comments 176 views
Submitted by
KevinKing
Oscar, guilty even if proven inno...

I was never intending to write anything on the Oscar Trial, but after reading an article titled “Pistorius Trial: The arrogance, the privilege, the farce, the insult” I suddenly have a lot to say. Read more...

10 comments 1565 views
Submitted by
Mamokhele Sebatane
I spit on Oscar's 5 year sentence

I don't know much about law, or about the justice system. But I know the pain of losing someone, especially to death. Read more...

7 comments 632 views
Submitted by
Zulu Mkhise
"Some" justice

At least some justice was was served today, OP has remorse for his actions. Read more...

0 comments 917 views

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Save up to R1000 on Hisense smartphones!

View the large range of Hisense smartphones. Buy today and save up to R1000!

Deal of the week!

Save R1200 on the Samsung 48” smart full HD LED television now only R8799. Buy now!

Toys 4 for the price of 3

Buy 4 toys and get the cheapest FREE! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Mind blowing prices – As seen on TV

Get mind blowing prices on 1000’s of products! Shop now.

Save 20% on Nivea beauty products!

Buy any two Nivea beauty products and save 20%. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

 

services

E-mail Alerts The latest headlines in your inbox

RSS feeds News delivered really simply.

Mobile News24 on your mobile or PDA

E-mail Newsletters You choose what you want

News24 on your iPhone Get News24 headlines on your iPhone.

SMS Alerts Get breaking news stories via SMS.

Blogs Your opinion on you, me and everyone.

Calais Website keywords automated by OpenCalais.

 
Interactive Advertising Bureau
 
© 2014 24.com. All rights reserved.
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.