Thursday, 27 February 2020

FRAUDSTERS WALK INTO A POLICE TRAP


TWO Bulawayo fraudsters who walked into a police trap have each been jailed for four years for duping a man of US$3 500 by selling him a residential stand using the stand owner’s fake national identity card.

Stancilus Phiri (45) and Richard Ncube (63) both of Iminyela Flats in Iminyela suburb duped Mr Shepherd Nkomo (53) of Cowdray Park suburb. .

The duo misrepresented to Mr Nkomo, who wanted to buy a residential stand for his son, that they were selling stand number 21647 in Pumula South which was registered in the name of Mr Pikirai Muchaona (53) of Cowdray Park suburb. 

They sold the stand for US$4 000 and Mr Nkomo paid them US$3 500 and started building on the site, before the stand owner raised alarm.

The two were arrested when they approached Mr Nkomo to collect the remaining US$500.

The court heard that Phiri and Ncube created a fake national identity card which was registered in Mr Muchaona’s name but had Phiri’s face.

They used the fake ID in selling the stand. The duo pleaded guilty to fraud when they appeared before Bulawayo magistrate Mr Lizwe Jamela.

They were each sentenced to four years in prison. Three months were suspended from each of their sentences for five years on condition that they do not commit a similar offence.

“A further six months in prison is suspended on condition that each accused person restitutes the complainant before March 30 this year. The accused persons will each serve 39 months in prison,” Mr Jamela said.

The magistrate also ordered that the fake identity card be destroyed.

Prosecuting, Mr Terrence Chakabuda said sometime in November last year, the accused persons connived with Sethukani Ncube, John Dube and Simba who are still at large and approached Mr Nkomo. 

“The accused persons told him that they were selling a stand in Pumula South suburb for US$4 000. The complainant paid US$3 500 towards the stand and began constructing a house on the land,” he said.

Sometime in January this year, Mr Muchaona visited his stand and discovered that the stand had been sold to someone and construction had started.

He reported the matter to the police. On Monday last week, the accused persons then went to Pumula Housing office where they were supposed to meet the complainant for him to sign “consent papers” and pay them the balance of US$500.

This led to their arrest. Phiri and Ncube were also searched leading to the recovery of the fake national identity card. Chronicle

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