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Balopi and Kwape impostors granted bail

CHARGED: Isaac Hitchfield

Village Chief Magistrate, Batho Kgerethwa, last Friday granted bail to a couple that had allegedly been collected donations and funds from businesses pretending to be Minister Mpho Balopi and Dr Lemogang Kwape.

The lovers, Isaac Hitchfield, 38, from Molepolole and his 30-year-old girlfriend Bontle Didimalang Masala residing in Gaborone West have allegedly been defrauding business owners pretending to be the two ministers.

They are each facing one count of obtaining by false pretenses and two counts of attempt to obtain fraudulently.

Court heard that the two accused persons on July 8th, 2020 at Central Business District (CBD) Gaborone, acting together in concert and with common purpose, fraudulently and with intent to defraud, obtained the sum of P5000.00 from Dr Tawanda Masenya of Zeta Clinic.

Hitchfield allegedly telephoned Masenya and pretended to be MP Balopi requesting for donations for disabled school children in Gaborone North whilst in actual fact and truth knowing the presentation to be false.

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On the second count, the duo made a telephonic conversation in an attempt to obtain fraudulently P5000.00 from Ureriya Nikuweleke Isa of Barisama Pty/Ltd and also Woolworths Manager, Gorata Abotseng Lekau requesting for donations for elderly and disabled people at Tlwokweng where Hitchfield pretended to be Dr Kwape.

The accused persons are said to have been using donation forms with fraudulent names to convince people to give them cash and sign for such false donations.

State Prosecutor Superintendent Joshua Ntau told court that they have made progress on the case and therefore did not oppose the accuseds’ bail application.

Chief Magistrate Kgerethwa granted the duo bail on condition that, they each paid P2000 and provide one surety who would bind themselves in the like sum.

They are to also report weekly on Fridays at Serious Crimes office and not interfere with state witnesses.

Magistrate Kgerethwa further ordered the two never to commit similar offences whilst on bail.

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The case continues on the 31st of August when the accused persons appear for mention.

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