Duo ‘clones’ ATM cards
By Freestate On 11 Jul, 2013 At 12:41 PM | Categorized As Local, News | With 0 Comments

Ezekiel Morake

THE Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court this week heard how a man had hidden six illegally cloned bank cards in his underwear after allegedly using them for a shopping spree at the Mimosa Mall last month.
The man and his partner, both Zimbabwean nationals, this week asked the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court to grant them bail and pleaded not guilty to seven counts of fraud and 13 charges of illegal possession of bank cards.
Matthew Kwenda and Khulani Nkululeko Hadebe, both 46, were arrested on June 19 when security guards at the mall caught them with the cards and called the police.

The state opposed the bail application citing residential distances for both Kwenda and Hadebe who live in Rocklands Stands, in Cape Town and in Germiston in Johannesburg respectively.
The men remain in custody after the court postponed the bail hearing to July 9 to allow the police time to carry out further investigations.

During the hearing, Warrant Officer Ben Lekgari told the court that Kwenda was caught by security guards at the Mimosa Mall in Bloemfontein while in possession of ATM cards he had used to buy cellphones, clothes and a laptop.
He said one of the men had used the cards to buy items in some of the shops at that mall.
“We were called by the security guards at the Mimosa Mall on 19 June and found six cards in his (Kwenda) underwear.
The other seven cards were found from the security cards. I found an identity document (ID) from his pocket.
There were seven transactions which were conducted using the cards,” Lekgari said.
He said Kwenda, who has a South African wife, had pending fraud cases allegedly committed in Cape Town and was out on R3000 bail granted by a Cape Town magistrate.

According to the police officer, Kwenda had a tendency to commit crime and would still commit another fraud should he be released on bail.
He argued that bank card cloning was very prevalent. He said the public documents had shown that they had other names from what they had told him, meaning that they could easily change their identity once given bail.
Lekgari said Hadebe did not have previous convictions but was once charged with common assault although the police officer was unsure whether suspected fraudster was convicted or acquitted.
Lekgari told the court he was waiting for the home affairs department to confirm whether or not the two Zimbabweans were in South legally.

The accused men are represented by Advocate Eugene Willard and the state is represented Koenie Pieterse.
Bail application was before Magistrate Thobela Tshozi.

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