Four suspects – between the ages of 29 and 35 – were arrested in the Free State yesterday after police received information suggesting that they were in possession of counterfeit notes and defrauding people.
SAPS Free State spokesperson Brigadier Motantsi Makhele said, “It is alleged that [the] suspects would make people take [out] bank loans, promising them that their money will be doubled and that such loans will be cancelled at the bank.
“They apparently also performed rituals for people submitting such requests to the banks and those applying for jobs with promises of promotions to higher posts.”
After being made aware of the suspects’ intentions, Reitz police’s mobilized Phuthaditjhaba Tactical Response Team, Bethlehem Hawks and Bethlehem Local Criminal Record Centre conducted an intelligence-driven operation.
When the authorities arrived at the identified house, they found the suspects – three males and one female – and requested to search the residence.
“During the search, fake R100 notes valued [at] over R17 000 and a large amount of cash were found. Upon a further search outside the house, a small traditional hut was found with Bibles and a calabash, letters of resignation from people requesting to be given luck for money, jobs [and] promotions to higher positions as well as papers cut to [the] size of banknotes,” said Makhele.
All the items that were found were seized and kept as exhibits.
The suspects were arrested for the possession of counterfeit money and are expected to appear before the Reitz Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday.