The owner of a well-known jewellery and watch shop in Paarl was arrested on Friday 10 February on charges of fraud which amounts to about R400 000.
According to Captain Louise du Plessis, spokesperson of the Paarl police station, several complainants allege that they handed in jewellery for repair or adjustments at the Goldnest in Main Road and either never received the jewellery or received fake jewellery in return.
According to one such complainant, a resident from central Paarl, she got swindled by the jeweller Euan du Plessis in January.
“I handed in my engagement ring along with other pieces of jewellery so that he could mould it into one ring,” she said.
“The ring he handed back to me was quite elegant, but due to personal taste I returned the ring for a different design. That was when things turned fishy,” she said.
Over the course of the next three weeks the complainant struggled to get her ring back. She grew suspicious when Euan started to spin her all sorts of stories.
“He told me that his daughter was sick and then he told me that his girlfriend was missing,” she said.
When she eventually did get the ring back, two days before the suspect’s arrest, she tested it’s authenticity.
“I was shocked that the diamond on the ring turned out to be fake. The same thing happend to a few of my colleagues,” she said.
Euan du Plessis appeared in the Paarl Magistrates’ Court on Monday and was remanded in custody until today (16 February), when he will appear in court again for bail application.
Police urge members of the public who have done business with the suspect to get a valuation certificate from another jeweller and to then contact them if they suspect any wrongdoing.