The Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DPCI ) has arrested a 40-year-old suspect who has been masquerading as a Hawks investigator.
The suspects’ arrest follows a two month probe after the DPCI received several complaints from different government officials and business people of individuals purporting to be Hawks investigators at levels of Colonels, Brigadiers and Major Generals; extorting huge sums of money in order to destroy case dockets or files that they are associated with or being investigated against them.
Coincidentally, most of the victims who were approached are subject of various investigations by Hawks. Among the people the victims was a business person from Johannesburg. He was allegedly contacted by a Major General Moodley of the Hawks from Bloemfontein, Free State.
Subsequent to this information, the DPCI (Hawks) conducted an extensive investigation which led to the arrest of an Indian male from Honeydew, Johannesburg on Friday.
The modus operandi entails calling and sending text messages to unsuspecting subjects of Hawks Investigations thereby extorting varying sums of money under the pretence of destroying case files.
Most of the victims were oblivious of the scam as these blackmailers were even having WhatsApp status that had Hawks insignia and were even bold to provide genuine bank accounts where such monies would be deposited.
The suspect is due to appear at Krugersdorp Magistrates’ court today on charges of extortion and impersonating police official. Other similar investigations are at an advanced stage and arrests are expected soon.
The National Head of the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation, Lieutenant General Godfrey Lebeya has welcomed the arrest of the suspect and also condemned the alleged activities that continue to taint the image and reputation of the corruption busting unit.
Lieutenant General Lebeya has urged the members of the public not to fall prey to the scam and advised members of the public to report such incidents to the appropriate authorities.