The Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation has issued a warning to South African women to be vigilant amid a “rapid increase of dating scam incidents”.
The warning came after a 60-year-old Polokwane woman was scammed out of R800 000 of her pension money.
“According to the victim, who was employed by the Department of Education in Limpopo as a teacher, she met a guy at a shopping complex in Polokwane in the beginning of the year,” said Hawks spokesperson in Limpopo, Lieutenant-Colonel Matimba Maluleke.
She struck up a relationship with the man and on one occasion visited her boyfriend’s rented house in Ivy Park, Polokwane.
“According to the victim, she was taken to one of the rooms by the suspect so she could be introduced to the ancestors. In the room, the victim alleged she heard a voice telling her she had been suffering for a very long time, but her suffering was over, as there was R3.8 million waiting for her.”
The woman said the boyfriend kept asking for money “in order to redeem her fortune of R3.8m”.
The woman, who received her pension payout in September, paid over R800 000 to the boyfriend, but later became suspicious.
“She allegedly visited the suspect at his place, but found no one was there.
The neighbours told her a few days ago, the suspect came with a truck, took his stuff and left,” said Maluleke. “Potential victims, particularly well-to-do single/widowed women, are advised to be careful,” Maluleke said.