Police Arrest Three Con Artists

WINDHOEK City Police have arrested three suspects for allegedly impersonating police officers and trying to defraud a Mariental resident of N$2 000.

Gerry Shikesho, City Police senior superintendent, said the 32-year-old victim received a call on Friday morning informing her that her son, an 18-year-old student at the University of Namibia (Unam) had been arrested and was in police custody.

The student, the alleged scammers said, had been arrested after causing commotion at the university and damaging furniture and equipment.

The intended fraud victim was told that police had detained the student in a holding cell after suspecting that he might not have been mentally well at the time.

Shikesho said the suspects then asked the victim to pay N$5 000 for her son to be released and the victim borrowed N$2 000 and rushed to Windhoek on the same day.

Fortunately for the intended victim, she informed a relative who is a police officer.

The officer was suspicious of the story and decided to trap the suspects. He dressed in civilian clothes, followed the victim to the men who had come to collect the money and arrested them.

The three will appear in court today.

Speaking to The Namibian on Friday, the victim said the suspects had told her to deposit the money in a NamPost account but was suspicious and decided to come to Windhoek instead.

“They kept calling me, asking for the money. Sometimes they used a private number. It was the way they handled the whole situation that got me suspicious. I then informed a relative who is a police officer,” said the woman.

Shikesho warned members of the public against using back door or other corrupt means to access the law as it would result in them losing money.

“These cases happen all the time, people should be warned and ask for a police identity card if people claim they are police officers,” said Shikesho.

Meanwhile, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah has warned the public about a con-artist, who cheated an Oranjemund petrol attendant of N$1 500 after impersonating her.

In a statement, Nandi-Ndaitwah said the incident took place almost three weeks ago when a woman who used the name ‘Lahya’ called the petrol attendant asking him to help the minister’s stranded nephew in the town.

The caller allegedly told the attendant that the minister who was in South Africa then, would pay him back on her return. The minister was indeed at the time in South Africa for that country’s elections.

The attendant gave the money to a person who provided a fake identification card before disappearing.

Nandi-Ndaitwah said calls to the number the suspect used went unanswered.

“I caution you, my fellow countrymen and women, to be very careful and avoid being robbed of your hard-earned money by these con artists,” said Nandi-Ndaitwah.

Source : The Namibian