Look out for con man’s ‘sad story’

2016-03-29 06:00

A fraudster is making his way through Greenhaven, Surrey Estate, Gatesville, Rylands and surrounding areas.

According to Umesh Vallabh of Greenhaven Crime Watch, the man, who goes by the name of Rushaad, tells unsuspecting residents, especially elderly residents, sob stories about his terminally ill wife or children. He preys on people to give him groceries and money.

“He is well-dressed and well-spoken, so it is easy to fall for his tactics. He was reported to have been inside homes, so it just shows how convincing he can be.

“If he is spotted please report him to your closest neighbourhood watch,” Vallabh urges.

He says that despite residents exposing the man’s activities on WhatsApp groups, they still need to get the word out to more unsuspecting residents.

Vallabh says the man goes by several aliases and that he lives behind the Vygieskraal vlei.

“He frequents Surrey Estate, Greenhaven, Penlyn Estate, Rylands, Gatesville and those type of areas at the moment. He is intimidating as such as he is crooking the people.

“If we see him around, we immediately ask him to leave the area because he is not welcome.

“We can’t actually tell what he will do if he has a chance to do something inside the home. The police are also aware of him, but nobody has laid a case against him, so the police can’t actually do something and investigate him,” he adds.

Vallabh also says the man was confronted by a community member, with the police being called in, but the man was released as there were no prior arrests or cases against him.

Lieutenant Ian Bennett, Manenberg police’s spokesperson, says in order for them to bring justice to the people, there needs to be cases made for an investigator to take up a complaint of that nature.

“There is no such thing as a ‘con man’. It is either a fraud case or a theft with diversion case, but there are avenues the public can follow to prosecute these people. They really need to lay criminal charges and they need to trust the police.

“The long arm of the law is long, but it is also patient, so you need to build a case,” he says.

He adds that no matter how long ago any incident occurred, a criminal case would remain valid for many years.

“Depending on the circumstances, any case can be picked up at any given point in time. There are people who after 20 or 30 years realised that this person violated me, especially in sexual assault cases.

“And then there are many women who have come forward who were violated in their teens.

“A case is never invalid, unless you come forward and enquire about it,” he adds.

He urges community members to come forward early instead, so that they can stop crime before it is repeated.

“The longer they take to come forward, the more difficult it becomes to stop this person, because then they become brazen and arrogant, because they think they are getting away with it.

“We encourage the community to take the police into their confidence to report the activities if it is criminal.

“No case is of lesser importance than the next and each case will get the attention that it deserves.”

Anyone can report criminal activity to the Manenberg police on 021 699 9400 or CrimeStop on 0860 010 111.

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


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.


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.