Woman says she took life cover on strangers and claimed

2014-08-06 00:00

A WOMAN told the high court in Pietermaritzburg yesterday how she participated in a life insurance scam.

Hlengiwe Nkosi and Thembeni Nsele pleaded guilty to fraud.

Nkosi told the court in her plea statement that she met Amon Bhekumuzi Mpanza, who gave her the identity document of a Thandi Rejoice Ndwandwe in 2012, claiming that she was his daughter from an affair. She approached Assupol and took out cover for R20 000.

“This was for a normal life cover, which would be doubled if the death was by an accident,” said Nkosi.

She also approached Liberty Life and took out cover of R30 000.

Later that year, Mpanza returned with a death certificate for Ndwandwe, who had died of unnatural causes.

“He gave me a form completed by a doctor. I approached both insurance companies and my claims were successful,” said Nkosi.

She and Mpanza shared the money.

She said she knew that she was committing fraud as she had no insurable interest in Ndwandwe.

Nsele also pleaded guilty, stating that she was approached by Nokwazi Hambeleni Ngema in November 2010. She was told that there was an easy way to make money by taking life cover for people and later claiming from the insurance companies.

She was given an identity document belonging to Phumelele Precious Zulu, a person she did not know. She then took a policy at Sanlam of R30 000 and another at Channel Life of R30 000.

In 2012, Ngema brought her a death certificate for her to claim. Both policies were paid out at double the insured amount as Zulu had died in an accident.

“Ngema took R70 000 and I remained with R50 000, which I used for personal needs,” said Nsele.

Ngema and Nsele repeated the scam in 2011 by taking out cover for a Greben Bheki Thabethe at Old Mutual (R15 000), Assupol (R20 000) and Metropolitan (R30 000). Again, she was paid double by all the companies. She shared the money with Ngema.

Nsele said she was also approached by Mpanza, who gave her the identity document of Ndwandwe. She took out policies with Sanlam (R30 000) and Channel Life (R30 000). However, both were declined when she claimed.

Acting Judge Sibusiso Mngomezulu convicted the two and will sentence them today.

Earlier, the state withdrew charges against some other people originally alleged to be members of the syndicate.

State advocate Sipho Magwaza first applied for the trials of the syndicate members to be separated, stating that Amon Mpanza, Nokwazi Ngema–Zondi, Bheki Buthelezi and Thobani Mpanza would stand trial in Madadeni, Newcastle, in February, on charges of fraud, theft and seven of murder.

The alleged syndicate was operating in Pongola, Newcastle, Piet Retief, Nongoma and Vryheid.

Magwaza withdrew all charges against Mduduzi Nsele and Lesia Ndawonde.

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