Amanzimtoti community warned about new robbery tactic

2017-11-29 06:02

CAPTAIN Charlene van der Spuy warns the Amanzimtoti community to be vigilant and aware of a new robbery tactic occurring in the eThekwini Outer South Cluster area.

The modus operandi is that robbers watch a person withdrawing a large sum on money, either in the bank or at an ATM at a mall or shopping centre.

“They are aware the person has withdrawn a large amount of money, and that it is in their possession and will go as far as following the person to the taxi rank, or the taxi itself, and wait for the person to get off.

The person, who made a large withdrawal, will then be approached by a female, who will point out a large amount of cash (in a plastic money bag, or rolled up in a wad on the floor) close to where they are standing or walking past,” said Captain Van der Spuy.

She said the female will then ask the person whether they have dropped the money and if it belongs to them. In return, they will say “no”, and then she will suggest they both should perhaps “split the money because they both saw it at the same time”.

“A request will be made to the unsuspecting victim to follow her to her car as she is frightened to split the money in public. On walking to her car in the parking lot, they will be approached by two “bogus policemen” dressed in plain clothes.

They will be shown fake police appointment cards and driving an unmarked police vehicle,” Captain Van der Spuy said.

“The bogus policeman will tell them they are both under arrest for taking the money on the ground and not reporting it to the necessary authorities. “They will be asked to climb into their unmarked police vehicle and told they are being taken to the police station.”

The victims will then be taken to a quiet place nearby and asked to put all the money that is on them into an envelope, including all the money withdrawn at the bank.

“The robbers will then drop them off along the street, giving them a closed envelope with the impression that it is their own withdrawn monies returned to them. On inspection of the envelope, the unsuspecting victim will only find paper inside the given envelope.

“On occasion these same robbers will also use firearms and demand the person to co-operate and even make further withdrawal transactions at ATMs elsewhere.”

The community is asked to be aware of this new robbery modus operandi and not to fall for this set up.

“If you have made a huge withdrawal of money at a bank or ATM, do not entertain any conversations with strangers or get distracted in or outside the bank by anyone. If you are approached in this manner, immediately return to where the withdrawal was made or go to the nearest security officer to report such incident. Do not go anywhere private or secluded with any person you do not know. Do not make huge withdrawals on your own, always take a family member or friend with you,” she said.

She added it is important to be streetwise and vigilant at all times.

- Supplied.

The modus operandi is that
robbers watch a person withdrawing a large sum on money, either in the bank or at an ATM at a mall or shopping centre.

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