A concerted effort between the Komani crime intelligence unit, Hawks and the K9 unit led to the arrest of a doctor that had been practising medicine illegally since 2018.
Fake Komani doctor and assistant nabbed
In a statement, Eastern Cape police spokesperson Brigadier Tembinkosi Kinana revealed that ‘Operation Corona’ was launched in September 2020, after authorities received tips about a doctor and her assistance who were “practising without a licence in Molteno.”
“The reports further alleged that she was not registered with the Health Professional Council of South Africa (HPCSA), but nonetheless was dispensing medication to patients,” the statement read.
The dangers of misdiagnosing patients, without the appropriate knowledge in medicine, cannot be understated and Komani police understood this.
Efforts were soon expedited to gather enough intel on the suspects’ operations. During the surveillance period, the fake doctor was observed accepting patients and dispensing medicine.
“On the second day, after the surveillance of the surgery the previous day, an intensive search was conducted in the surgery and the house of the bogus doctor,” Brig Kinana said.
R700 000 worth of medicine confiscated
Inside the house, police stumbled on a treasure trove of prescription medicine. The assistant, who turned out to be romantically involved with his boss, was held liable as an accomplice in the fake doctor’s scam.
“A lot of medication estimated at R700 000, used and unused needles for injection were confiscated,” Kinana added.
With the mountain of evidence piled against the suspect, including a declaration by the HPCSA that the woman is, in fact, not registered to practice medicine, the case now rests with the State.
The suspects face charges related to fraud and contravention of Medicine Act No 101/1965. Kinana confirmed that the couple will make their first appearance at the Queenstown Magistrate Court on Friday.
Eastern Cape top-cop Major General Thembisile Patekile applauded the work of the police who removed a danger to vulnerable patients in Molteno.
“As management of the SAPS in the Province, we are on record as having warned people against fraudulent activities on many occasions. Those who are adamant and believe these are only idle threats, must suffer the consequences of their actions,” said Major General Patekile.