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Man charged with fraud

The suspect that was arrested for tampering with Eskom meters in May last year appeared in the Kroonstad Regional Court on Tuesday (31/08).

Gerhard Ferreira pleaded guilty to 14 charges of fraud and ten charges of malicious damage to property on farms in the Bothaville and Viljoenskroon area.

He was sentenced to 12 years imprisonment.

The sentence is suspended for five years on the condition that he reimburses Eskom with R921 830,88 for the losses incurred by the company.

The full amount is payable by 31 December 2020.

Ferreira was arrested for calibrating meters for customers at a fee.

Following a tip-off, Eskom approached the Hawks to investigate the matter.

They eventually caught Ferreira red-handed on 26 May 2017.

Customers who had paid Ferreira for his illegal services were charged with tamper fines to a total of R229 000.

Eskom customers are reminded never to allow anyone without an authentic work order form to do any work on an Eskom installa­tion.

In addition, Eskom will never ask for payments to be made into bank accounts other than the one specified on the customers’ official Eskom bills.

Suspected fraud can be reported by calling Eskom’s fraud hotline on 0800-11-2722.

To report electricity theft, an anonymous SMS can be sent to 32211 at R1 per SMS.

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