Four people were arrested on Wednesday for allegedly attempting to scam a man who was trying to sell his car on Gumtree.
However, after the man met them in East London, he realised that they had no interest in his car.
Instead, according to police spokesperson Brigadier Tembinkosi Kinana, they tried to convince him to give them R5,000 for a million Zimbabwean dollars and what they claimed to be diamonds wrapped in brown paper.
Realising the deal was no longer about the purchase of the vehicle, the man pretended he was going to get the required amount of money.
He then alerted the police who immediately tracked down the alleged scammers and arrested them.
“An amount estimated at above 20 Zimbabwean dollars, R600, stones and [a] cellphone were recovered. The suspects were driving in a Silver-Grey [Toyota] Run X, which was also confiscated for further investigations,” police said in a statement.
The suspects are expected to appear in the East London Magistrate’s Court on several charges, including charges related to the Precious Stones Act.
Provincial police commissioner Lieutenant-General Liziwe Ntshinga hailed the police’s swift response, describing the arrests as “a remarkable breakthrough”.