South Africa: scammers jailed

De Master Yoda

Jabu Nkabinde. Olusegun Justus Davies. Jailed.

A South African and his Nigerian co-accused have been jailed for 15 years each over the so-called 419 scam.

Jabu Nkabinde, 33, and Olusegun Justus Davies, 35, opened a bank account using a dead man's identity and then defrauded four people with the 419 scam.

They also defrauded another bank.

The men told their victims they had won about R30,5-million in a UK lottery, which they would receive on paying "administration fees" into a fraudulent account.

Nkabinde and Davies were found guilty on six charges of fraud by the Pretoria Specialised Commercial Crimes Court.

They opened a bank account at Absa in 2005 in the name of Mthandazile Bhudane, and sent out emails to unsuspecting victims informing them they had won a "6 Ball Lotto Game" competition in the UK.

However, a "handling and administration fee" of 4nbsp;550 pound was required to process payment of the winnings.

The money was to be deposited into the bank account of M Bhudane, the "region agent" of the "6 Ball Lotto Game" in South Africa.

From January to August 2005, Pieter Strydom, Charles du Preez, Elshna Toolse and Louis le Roux-Ferreira were led to believe they had won a fortune.

When they asked for proof that this wasn't a scam, they received certificates and faxes to "confirm" their winnings.

They all deposited between R52 097 and R53&nbsp872, depending on the exchange rate, into the bank account.

But they never received their millions.

In addition, the two men used their account to obtain a bond of R320 000 for a house from another bank.

Nkabinde went into the bank in August 2005 to withdraw money from the account, arousing the suspicions of the teller, who notified the police.

A few days later Davies was arrested in the house bought with the bond they'd obtained.

Sentencing the men, magistrate Jakkie Wessels took into account that both were in jail awaiting trial for more than two years.

Nkabinde had enrolled for programmes in prison, indicating that he wanted to change.

Davies was in SA on a temporary asylum-seeking permit.