Woman wanted for allegedly scamming investors of R10 million

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The South African Police Service (SAPS) and the Hawks have appealed to the public to assist with information on the whereabouts of a woman, who allegedly scammed unsuspecting investors for an accumulative amount of R10 million.

Police say the woman allegedly lured family and friends to invest in her Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) business by promising lucrative dividends from June 2019.

Minimum amounts of money have however been paid, and she is unreachable.

SAPS national spokesperson Vish Naidoo says multiple cases have been registered at various police stations in Gauteng.

“The investigation team further revealed that [Swereen] Govender created fraudulent suppliers’ certificates from different government departments for PPE’s. Govender has since been positively linked and is wanted on these fraud cases in Gauteng some of which cases she is alleged to have taken people’s life savings, retirement and disability pensions, leaving these people absolutely destitute.”

“People are reminded to be extremely cautious when investing money with individuals. If an offer appears too good to be true, know that it probably is and one should rather consider investing one’s capital with long standing reputable investment companies,” explains Naidoo.

Meanwhile, earlier this year, the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) said it had spent at least R70 million on investigating widespread corruption in the procurement of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) by the end of December 2020.

The SIU’s chief financial officer (CFO) Andre Gernandt was briefing Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa) on the report it released last week on investigations it had done during the National State of Disaster.

Contracts of more than R13 billion for COVID-19 related equipment are under investigation.

In the video below, SIU briefed the media on investigations into alleged COVID-19 PPEs procurement corruption: