Crime & Punishment of Saturday, 12 January 2013
Source: Daily Guide
The Tamale Metropolis is fast gaining notoriety in activities involving confidence tricksters who have on several instances succeeded in duping unsuspecting residents under various guises.
According to our investigations, there is an increase in the number of persons falling prey to the pranks of tricksters who come in various forms to avoid being noticed by their victims.
The worrying trend, which is on the rise lately, saw some clients of local banks losing several thousands of cedis to these bandits.
Police have promised to unmask them within the shortest possible time to safeguard the sinking image of the city as a result of their nefarious activities.
The gorgeously dressed tricksters who sometimes walk the streets of the metropolis posing as bankers, pastors and stranded strangers have various ways of luring their victims into believing their stories before engaging in the unthinkable.
The mode of operation of those who profess to be bankers is that they are seen dressed in suits lurking within banking halls under the pretext of assisting those who want to make savings and cannot fill in forms.
As part of the well orchestrated plan, they offer to help the depositor make the lodgings and in the process deliberately make errors while filling in the details requesting the victim to bring fresh savings leaflets while they count the money to be sure it is exact.
They bolt with the cash thereafter leaving the stranded customers to their fate.
Two customers at the Ghana Commercial Bank (GCB) main branch have fallen victim to this scam with GH¢6,000 and GH¢5,300 stolen from them through this well rehearsed plan.
Another aspect of their operation is that these persons approach you and behave like prophets and would want to tell you things that are happening spiritually around you.
They tend to tell you things that excite you and in the process lure you into giving them huge sums of money claiming it is meant to perform special prayers to protect you against evil forces that may be working against you.
Other aspects are that they will offer to double your money for you and give you more wealth by requesting you to buy specific items for that purpose so that they can assist you.
They engage in various tricks in order to outwit their victims.
The last category consists of those who will be standing at an isolated part of the main road and upon seeing a passer-by, they start making some flimsy monetary demands under the pretext of either leaving his wallet at home or having just realized that it is missing.
One of such persons who mustered courage and walked up to a reporter last Friday claimed he was a newly recruited teacher who was posted to the region but on arrival had his wallet stolen and needed cash to travel back home.
Falling for his concocted story, the reporter parted with some money.
Two days later while accompanying a friend to undertake an errand, the same young man pulled up claiming he lost his mum in the village had come to the city to inform his brother only to be told he had been transferred elsewhere.
When he was queried about details of his brother, the fraudster started shivering and almost took to his heels on realizing he had been identified for faking a similar story days earlier.
The police have therefore advised residents to be wary of the nefarious activities of the tricksters.
According to the police administration, they had on countless occasions received frightening reports of these tricksters and were leaving nothing to chance.
They however noted that the major antidote to these scams was extra caution among the citizenry who came into contact with strangers and trusted them overnight.