CityPress - - Business -

leader, Gil­lian was given the name of a se­nior of­fi­cer at the po­lice sta­tion who ad­vised her to get the whole group of in­vestors to­gether to lay a charge un­der one case num­ber.

He told her that the larger the sum de­frauded, the more likely it would be viewed as a fraud case and in­ves­ti­gated at a higher level.

Gil­lian heard noth­ing for about 18 months. Then, out of the blue, she re­ceived a call from an ad­vo­cate who told her the man had been pros­e­cuted and had reached a set­tle­ment.

The agree­ment was that, if the com­plainants were will­ing to ac­cept the terms, they would each re­ceive R100 000, fol­lowed by monthly amounts un­til the debts were re­paid. If the pay­ments failed at any stage, the of­fender would be sen­tenced to 10 years’ im­pris­on­ment. So far he has kept to his agree­ment. “What a jour­ney this was. My mes­sage to any­one who is scammed is: Do not just give up, re­port the mat­ter, jus­tice may take its time, but it does work.”

Gil­lian has been ex­traor­di­nar­ily lucky – partly ow­ing to her tenac­ity. Very few vic­tims ever fol­low through or ever see their money again.

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