The Family Violence Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit in Gqeberha are warning the community to be wary and guarded against scamsters using the unit’s name and fictitious police officers names to extort money.
The unit has received at least five complaints in the last year from people who alleged that a ‘police officer’ from the specialised unit telephonically contacts people and inform them that they are suspects in rape and sexual offences cases.
The bogus caller would request money varying from R5 000-00 to R7 000-00 to be paid. Only on one occasion, an account number was given by the scammer. The caller would also indicate that the money is shared between himself and the prosecutor (name of prosecutor also fictitious).
The recipient of the call are innocent people who are neither complainants nor suspects in any of the cases investigated by the unit. Some of the victims are also from out of the NMB metro.
Police are warning people that at no stage will money be requested from any police official and that includes investigating officers for cases under investigation. If such a call is received, always make contact with the relevant unit or station before panicking and succumbing to the request. Never accept any numbers provided by the caller to return their call.