A fraud syndicate posing as the investment company “Mr Coin” are being hunted by Mpumalanga law enforcement after conning over 5 000 victims. These included teachers, nurses and government officials, like police officers, into investing money promising them returns between 80% and 150%.
POLICE ARE ON THE HUNT
The Mr Coin office was at an Elukwatini mall where they recruited and attracted people from Nhlazatshe, Elukwatini, Ekulindeni and other surrounding places.
It is also alleged that the fraudsters had other offices at Carolina, Ermelo and Dundonald which also allegedly recruited and attracted potential victims from surrounding areas.
The Police Services’ Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (Hawks) is hunting down the fraudsters.
Mpumalanga Hawks spokesperson Captain Dineo Lucy Sekgotodi says the Secunda team is handling the investigation into three fraud cases against Mr Coin.
“It is alleged in January last year, about nine scammers with seven males and two females, known as Sibusiso Mkhize, Ngwenya (unknown name), Charles Ndlovu, the mastermind Sqelo Mahlangu, and Keabetsi Dikobe recruited residents around Elukwatini and promised them that if they bring people to invest they will be paid 10% commission for each recruit,”
The fraudsters allegedly made presentations in schools and gave children pairs of school shoes as if they were giving back to poor communities.
Sekgotodi says the syndicate employed local people to do their fraudulent deeds.
“They made some events where people won prizes in competitions. They were targeting professionals like nurses, teachers, police officers and etc so that people would think they are legitimate. More than 5000 victims fell into their trap,”
says Captain Sekgotodi.
FRAUD SYNDICATE ON THE RUN
Hawks spokesperson Captain Sekgotodi says the branches of the fraud syndicate have closed down.
“It is alleged that on 11 March, fraud victims went to make some claims and found the offices closed. Information was reported to the Hawks for investigation. The so-called investments were divided into three categories: silver, gold and platinum. The silver category’s interest was 80% of the invested amount, the gold category’s interest was 100% and the platinum category’s interest was 150%. The investment money was brought in cash and not deposited in bank accounts. The alleged fraudsters also paid people in cash as their investment pay-outs. The fraudsters tried their utmost best to hide the evidence and their identities,”
Major General Zodwa Mokoena says the public must remain vigilant against scammers and assist police investigations into the fraudster by contacting the investigating officer, Captain Thembinkosi Nkambule on 082 303 9872.