Police station warns of scammers

2019-08-27 06:00

Claremont police station has issued a statement, asking residents to be aware of a group of suspicious people roaming the area, pretending to work for the City of Cape Town in an attempt to gain access to homes.

According to Claremont station commander, Colonel Maree Louw, many cases of theft have been reported in the past two months.

“The perpetrators are targeting elderly people in the Claremont area,” Louw says.

Complainants told of how they had been taken in by people, carrying a pen and a clipboard, who knocked on their doors and presented a fake City of Cape Town ID.

“According to reports, homeowners were told that they were there to check if all of the electrical plugs were working. They then asked the homeowners to switch the main power supply on and off,” says Louw.

As soon as their backs were turned, the perpetrators proceeded to steal small appliances like cellphones, iPads and laptops.

“The homeowners only discovered the theft after they had left,” says Louw.

She warns homeowners not to let anyone into their homes without verifying their identification with the City first, or they could call the sector commander in their area to assist with verification.

Sharon Cottle, the Mayco member for corporate services, reminds residents that fraudsters often pose as City employees and target unsuspecting Capetonians as part of their scams.

Residents are urged to take note of the following:

. City employees must have a City identity card with a staff number and photo;

. City employees will produce official City of Cape Town letters which will always include the name of the department, along with the City telephone numbers which residents can call to verify the work to be undertaken;

. City employees who are dispatched to undertake maintenance and repair work, or inspections, usually drive City of Cape Town marked vehicles with CCT registration number plates;

. If a resident is approached by a City contractor, they will always have an official job card which serves as a work permit from the City. Please ensure the job card includes the City’s latest logo.

Residents who are approached by officials can also call the City to verify the names of the staff members if needed.

Cottle says City officials often work outside of the normal working hours depending on the situation and as required.

“When in doubt, residents should rather decline the offer for assistance. Remember to capture the registration number, type of vehicle, photo of the vehicle and the description of the suspected fraudsters if possible.

V Call 0860 103 089 to report incidents.

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