Western Cape man appears over card fraud

Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons (Diego Grez)

An alleged syndicate member apparently tried to buy groceries with a fake bank card, the Bellville Specialised Commercial Crime Court heard on Wednesday.

Moegamat Farouk Martin, 42, of Lansdowne, Cape Town, was not asked to plead to charges of fraud and conspiracy to commit fraud, when he appeared before magistrate Sabrina Sonnenberg.

Martin was arrested in August when he tried to purchase groceries worth R13,811 with a cloned bank card.

According to the charge sheet, Pick n Pay branches were warned in August about cloned bank cards in circulation. On August 12, the retailer’s Kenilworth branch manager John Lendoor was notified that a credit card payment for a purchase Martin was trying to make had been declined.

Prosecutor Denver Combrink alleges Martin was found with a grey Master Card, supposedly issued by the Bank of America. Lendoor recognised the card as counterfeit and called the police.

An investigation revealed that the card had in fact been issued by Europay Belgium SCRL.

Martin is also charged with violating the Electronic Communications and Transactions Act.

Combrink told the court there was a possibility the case would be finalised in the form of a plea bargain. He said he had already informed defence counsel N Jaftha of the sentence that would be acceptable to the State, and it was now for the defence to discuss this with Martin.

If Martin disagreed with the proposed sentence, the plea negotiations would collapse, and the State would proceed to trial, he said.

Martin remained in custody and would be back in court on December 4.

– Sapa

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