Too good to be true deal cost illegal forex dealers P100 000
A lucrative black market forex deal went bad for two unsuspecting Francistown Mazezuru women who were robbed of US$15 000 (P100 000) at gun point last week.
What was supposed to be a sweet deal for black market foreign currency dealers, Punishment Sandasi, 21 and Siphateni Ngwenya34, turned into a bitter experience after armed robbers posing as customers placed an order for $USD 15 000 with them.
Sources at the Francistown bus rank said that to raise the requested amount, Punishment went around borrowing as much dollars as she could from fellow money changers.
When the robbers posing as clients arrived the following day, Punishment asked Siphateni to accompany her to a nearby bush to assist with the transaction. Hell, however broke loose at the taxi rank when the two women returned to their work station crying and empty handed, after they were robbed, not only of their cash but also of their cell phones.
Tempers flared when those who had assisted them with the deal realized that they had lost money in the process. “You must be joking young lady, I want the $3 000 I gave you,” shouted one of the many angry women who had gathered around the dazed Punsihment and her friend.
Confirming the incident, Gerald Estates Station Commander, Superintendent Motsholathebe Mothibi said, “ It seems the transaction was agreed upon at the bus rank, but the robbery took place in a bushy area between Gerald estates and town.” Although the two young women’s clothes were tattered and torn and they were visibly shaken, police suspected that they could have staged the robbery in cahoots with the robbers who were still at large.
“Because we suspected foul play we detained Punishment for two days while we carried out our investigations. We also learnt that the robbers are Batswana.”
In a separate but related incident, another Zezuru woman who also trades in forex illegally at the Francistown taxi rank was robbed of P10 000 outside her gate in Gerald Estates. “The woman was robbed at around 7 0’clock in the evening two weeks ago. “The suspects in this case are also still at large and we highly suspect that they could be the same group involved in last week’s incident,” the station Commander revealed.
Cautioning the public against engaging in illegal deals, Superintendent Mothibi said, people should desist from both operating as mobile bureau de changes and dealing on the black money market. “This is an illegal business, a punishable criminal offence. I therefore urge people to buy and sell their forex from banks and registered Bureau de changes.”he said