Sunnyside ‘social media kidnapper’ out of bail again

A man accused of two counts of kidnapping and robbery was granted R3 000 bail by the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday. Photo: stock

A man accused of kidnapping and robbery has been released on bail by the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court.

Clement Onyeica Oghonim (27) made a brief appearance in court on Tuesday on charges of assault, kidnapping, extortion and robbery with aggravating circumstances, and was granted R3 000 bail.

He is accused of robbing and kidnapping a 21-year-old man who was on a date with a girl he had met on social media.

According to police spokesperson, Captain Daniel Mavimbela, Oghonim was part of a group who had allegedly kidnapped two men after they were reportedly lured through online dating sites on two separate occasions.

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“He is out on R1 000 bail facing a charge of kidnapping in the other case,” said Mavimbela adding that Oghonim had been arrested in March after the victim’s brother alerted the police to the alleged kidnapping.

Mavimbela said the victim was allegedly on a blind date at a MacDonald’s in Sunnyside with a social media acquiantance.

“It is alleged that the two were sitting in the victim’s car when they were approached by three armed men. One of them threatened him with a knife before they got into his car and forced him to drive to a flat in Sunnyside,” he said.

Mavimbela said the robbers demanded money and bank cards from the victim.

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“Since the victim was not in possession of the items that the suspects were demanding, his brother was reportedly called so he could pay a ransom,” he said.

The brother alerted the police who were on patrol in the area, Mavimbela said.

“A few minutes later, the suspect was arrested after an attempt to run away. He reportedly told the police he wanted the victim to pay damages since he had found him [the victim] sleeping with his girlfriend,” he said.

Mavimbela said the woman had since disappeared.

“This is a common factor in almost all the cases where similar meetings result in kidnappings, robberies, theft of motor vehicles and hijackings.”

Oghonim’s two alleged accomplices were still at large.

ALSO READ: Caring stranger accused of attempted kidnapping

Oghonim was expected in the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court on 27 September.

Mavimbela said earlier this year, a 54-year-old Johannesburg man suffered a similar ordeal.

“He was less fortunate since his abductors made transactions worth more than R190 000 from his bank account.

“One of the kidnappers accused him of sleeping with his wife after he had met an unknown woman through a dating site. The two arranged a blind sex date in the woman’s flat where he was robbed,” he said.

“The criminals are determined to infiltrate many of the spaces where people coexist in harmony.

People should be extra vigilant when engaging with strangers through social media and online dating sites.”

 

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Tshegofatso Ngobeni
Journalist

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