Two in court over Facebook Marketplace robberies

Pieter Loedolff stabbed multiple times. Picture: Supplied

Pieter Loedolff stabbed multiple times. Picture: Supplied

Published Apr 29, 2024


Cape Town - The arrests of two men suspected of scamming people on Facebook Marketplace has not stopped others from luring buyers to the Nyanga area.

Since Kraaifontein couple Pieter Loedolff and Angelique Hawkins-Loedolff spoke publicly about their ordeal, more victims have approached them.

The couple said that they saw a PlayStation 5 console on Marketplace and made contact with the profile Avelino Mateyu. They set up an appointment to meet on April 20.

On arriving in Crossroads, Nyanga, they were met by three suspects who pointed a knife and gun at them. Loedolff was stabbed five times and they were robbed of money and cellphones.

“A week after we suffered the ordeal, we were approached by someone from Paarl. He told us that he went to Crossroads to buy a PlayStation 5, and when he got there, he was attacked by the same guys on Friday.

“They took R6 000, cellphones and a PS3, and apparently beat the guy up.

“He got our details from the article and made contact with us,” Hawkins-Loedolff said.

“The suspects met him at Nyanga SAPS, then said the PlayStation was at their house and he should follow them. When they stopped at a house, they got attacked and robbed.”

She said that on Saturday, she was visited by the police after they arrested two suspects.

“They showed us photographs and we could recognise the two suspects who we were face-to-face with on that day. We are happy that there was progress in the case. We wanted to warn the public about buying from Marketplace and in the Nyanga area.”

Police spokesperson FC van Wyk said: “The suspects, aged 20 and 21, are expected to appear in the Athlone Magistrate’s Court this morning.

“The two suspects were arrested by Nyanga serious and violent crimes detectives after photo ID was done.

“Both are in custody and will appear in court once charged. With regard to the mentioned Paarl case, it has not yet been received by Nyanga.”

The Cape Argus called the number of a PlayStation advertiser shared by a suspicious potential Marketplace buyer yesterday.

The man who answered said: “The price of the console is R5500; we also have games, we don’t do deliveries, you have to come to us. I can ask my son to meet with you at the Home Affairs offices. I can’t meet with you anywhere else because I run a fast food business and can’t leave my place.”

Nyanga community policing forum secretary Dumisani Qwebe said the Facebook scam was like extortion – it never ended.

“This is definitely a syndicate because they use Facebook to lure buyers or even sellers into the area, then they don’t only rob them of their money, they sometimes take cars. Those cars are then sold off. This is a challenge for us because people don’t come to the police station and ask for assistance and also an escort.

“These criminals will download pictures, like flat-screen TVs, and if it looks good, people will want to buy it.”

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Cape Argus