Beware of con man in Thembalethu
Aman believed to be behind the harrassment and attempt to scam people out of money while pretending to be someone else, was released on Monday morning, 7 May, after being arrested. The suspect (35) was arrested last Friday, 4 May, at his home in Thembalethu after the police have been trying to locate him for months. The man allegedly stole pictures from an Eastern Cape resident, Ayanda Gugushe, whom he met briefly in Tsitsikamma during the December holidays. Gugushe said he did not know the man before they met and they never talked much after being introduced. “Looks like he went to search for me on Facebook and took my pictures without my permission. He then used those pictures to contact women and harass them via WhatsApp, claiming to be me. I don’t know how many women he has contacted so far, but I was made aware of this by my aunt who knew one of the women and told me about this man who is claiming to be me. The woman was furious, because the man was sending her nude pictures and this affected her marriage,” said Gugushe.
The man also used Gugushe’s name and picture to ask money from his relatives. Gugushe’s uncle received a message saying Gugushe needs R100 as his car had broken down between Mthatha and Butterworth in the middle of nowhere, and in another WhatsApp he asked him for a loan of R100, claiming he was out of electricity and had no option but to ask, since he has a newborn baby.
These messages (see image) aroused the suspicion of Gugushe’s relatives, who alerted him. The police was informed, and despite facing a tough challenge to find the man, as he used different phone numbers and his address was not known, they managed to track him down in Thembalethu. The suspect was arrested. He was released pending further investigation.
If you suspect this kind of scamming, don’t just block the person on WhatsApp. Report the number to the police, who might track down the suspect. Always triple check the authenticity of a person who is asking you for money on WhatsApp before sending any money.
How to report people using your identity on WhatsApp:
On Android: Go to WhatsApp > Menu button > Settings > About and help > Contact Us. On iPhone: Go to WhatsApp > Settings > About and Help > Contact Us.
On Windows Phone: Go to WhatsApp > more > settings > about > support.
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