Gauteng Police Nab Suspected Syndicate Found With Thousands of Fake Sim Cards

Gauteng Police Nab Suspected Syndicate Found With Thousands of Fake Sim Cards

  • Gauteng police arrested a group of suspects found in possession of thousands of mobile network operator sim cards
  • Officers arrested 43 suspects and found thousands of chips inside a house in the Johannesburg suburb of Gauteng
  • Police spokesperson Captain Mavela Masondo confirmed to Briefly News that the effort uncovered a computer room used to manufacture the chips
  • The suspects are set to appear in the Alexandra Magistrate's Court on Tuesday on a string of charges
Police pounced on suspected Gauteng fraudsters in fake syndicate bust
Gauteng police nab suspected syndicate found with thousands of fake sim cards. Images: Thana Prasongsin and ArtMarie
Source: Getty Images

JOHANNESBURG — Gauteng police pounced on a group suspected of operating a fake sim card manufacturing ring, duping unsuspecting victims out of their money.

On Friday, the Gauteng Organised Crime Investigation Unit raided a house in the affluent suburb of Sandton, north of Johannesburg, and nabbed 43 suspects.

Thousands of sim cards manufactured

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Law enforcement uncovered thousands of counterfeit cellphone sim cards during the operation.

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Gauteng police spokesperson Captain Mavela Masondo said law enforcement also uncovered multiple computers.

"The sim cards were from all the South African cellphone service providers. We had some of the technicians from the network providers come to the scene to confirm that the sim cards were imitations."

Suspects facing a string of charges

Masondo told Briefly News that police believe the suspects had allegedly manufactured the chips on the premises.

"We found manufacturing equipment on the premises, and they were using the computers to create them."

He added two of the group were South African, while the rest were undocumented foreigners.

"They face several charges, including contravening the Cybercrimes Act, contravening the Immigration Act and fraud. More suspects might be arrested pending further investigation."

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The suspects, aged 17 to 43, will appear in the Alexandra Magistrate's Court on Tuesday, 25 June 2024.

3 People arrested in Mpumalanga for chopping man's hands off

In other crime-related news, Briefly News reported that police arrested three men in Emalahleni, Mpumalanga, for allegedly chopping off a man's hands, leaving him for dead.

South Africans were horrified by the incredibly violent incident.

According to TimesLIVE, the incident allegedly occurred after the man was approached by six suspects driving a green Opel Corsa bakkie.

Source: Briefly News

Tshepiso Mametela avatar

Tshepiso Mametela Tshepiso Mametela is a seasoned journalist with eight years of experience writing for online and print publications. He is an evening/weekend editor at Briefly News. He was a general news reporter for The Herald, a senior sports contributor at Opera News SA, and a reporter for Caxton Local Media’s Bedfordview and Edenvale News and Joburg East Express community titles. He has attended media workshops, including the crime and court reporting one by the Wits Justice Project and Wits Centre for Journalism in 2024. He was a member of the Forum of Community Journalists (FCJ) from 2018 to 2020.