The victim wanted to buy shopping containers and found a supplier in South Africa called "RAT Recycling and Trading". He bought 2 containers for R30,000k and sent the money by using a bank to bank transfer. The supplier promised delivery in November 2017.
"The next thing I was called by someone one who said because I did not pay for VAT I had to pay R9000 for each container as a Refundable Insurance Policy so I made another payment to the same recipient. I expected shipment to commence but instead I was told to pay for storage charges which I refused to pay because I am not the one who caused the delay. The supplier kept telling me to pay storage charges. Because this was taking too long I decided to agree to paying only after the shipper sent their companies address, registration number, landlines and other documents. That was the last communication. I've paid them R37000. What should I do now?"
RAT in SA appears to be fake. It doesn't appear to be a registered company in SA and no trace of any genuine business activity. The web domain they use was only registered in November 2017 and the physical address appears to be someone's house.
The issue of VAT is also suspicious. VAT is 14% in SA, how do they arrive at R9,000? And then it's a "Refundable Insurance Policy"? The payments made for this alleged VAT were "made via Western Union to a different recipient".
This is a scam.
Q. "What should I do now?"
A. There's nothing you can do. Scammers don't offer refunds.
"My car got involved in an accident last year November. It was a minor one and the guy told me its ok I can go and his insurance will fix his car. By the way the police charged me. Now this year his insurance company wrote to me saying I owe them 28 000 pula for those repairs. Is this allowed please?"
Insurance benefits the person who pays for it. If you cause the accident, you pay for it. If you're insured then your insurance company will pay on your behalf. That what they call "transfer of risk".
Third-party vehicle insurance covers damage to another person's vehicle if you are forced to pay for the repairs. Fully comprehensive cover covers everything. Your vehicle and any other vehicles that might be damaged.
Q. Should 3rd party insurance be compulsory?
A. Hell yes!
3. Read the small print
RCS credit card is offered in several store, apparently charging 2.66% interest per month which was actually reasonable, similar to most credit cards. It's roughly 37% per year.
BUT people complained about the "initiation fee" and "monthly service fee" they were charged which wasn't mentioned clearly when they applied for the card.
These are from the T&Cs on the RCS web site.
"You will be charged a monthly service fee ... You will also be charged a once-off initiation fee. After that, you will be charged your monthly service, insurance premium, and interest if you have a balance outstanding."Q1: Did you read the small print?
"we will determine the amount of any interest, fees and other costs that will be charged to your account."
"The amount and frequency of the service fee will be set out in your agreement, however, we may change this amount."
"The frequency of statements will be at our discretion"
"If your account goes into arrears ... you will be charged default administration costs and any other costs and fees relating to debt collection activities"
"we may process, record and/or disclose your personal information, including details of any transactions on your account ... any person or company working for or with us ... any of our retail partners"
Q2. Are you comfortable with your details being spread like this?