A woman masquerading as a sangoma has been arrested in Pretoria for allegedly defrauding a Hazeldean woman of about R400 000, including all her pension money.
The 27-year-old woman first met the “psychic medium, shaman and spiritual healer” last September after seeing her advert on a website.
Brooklyn police spokesperson Captain Collete Weilbach said the sangoma requested a consultation fee and a large payment for a “house-cleansing” ritual.
“Thereafter the victim was given ‘tasks’ and one of them was to buy a safe which was kept in the victim’s house.
“Large payments were made into the safe during rituals,” said Weilbach.
During one ritual, the sangoma prophesied that the victim would receive an inheritance of R10 million.
“To secure this prophecy the victim had to make payments into the safe. The victim and the sangoma prayed together over the money.
“Things escalated so far that the sangoma convinced the woman to resign from work in order for the ancestors to multiply her pension money,” Weilbach said. “The sangoma instructed her not to talk to anybody about her spiritual experiences and eventually the woman got suspicious.”
She then went to the Garsfontein Police Station for advice and they told her to open the safe, which she did, to find that the money was gone. The women suspects the sangoma stole the money from the safe while her eyes were closed during rituals and prayers.
“The sangoma defrauded and stole more than R400 000 from the woman,” Weilbach said.
A case of fraud was opened and the 39-year-old sangoma was arrested on Tuesday. Weilbach asked anyone else who has been defrauded by the so-called “Brooklyn sangoma” to come forward and report the matter to the police.
The sangoma will appear in the Hatfield Community Court today.