30 May STOLEN BATTERIES – CARTE BLANCHE TEAMS UP WITH BIDVEST PROTEA COIN
STOLEN BATTERIES – CARTE BLANCHE TEAMS UP WITH BIDVEST PROTEA COIN
As more and more consumers look for renewable energy sources in times of loadshedding, Carte Blanche’s in-depth investigation with Bidvest Protea Coin uncovers how criminals are on the prowl to sell you stolen batteries from mobile network towers.
With winter around the corner, you may be looking for alternative energy sources on the market. But beware, criminals are on the prowl and they could sell you stolen batteries from mobile network towers.
According to Leonie Verster, divisional executive at Bidvest Protea Coin, people do not realize how big the problem of battery theft is in South Africa. While formerly targeted at Zimbabwe and Malawi, there is an increasingly large market for deep-cycle battery theft in South Africa lucrative to criminals in times of frequent load shedding issues on a national scale.
The cellular network vandals sell the stolen batteries to unsuspecting consumers who wish to install the batteries as an alternative energy solution against power outages. Carte Blanch has warned consumers against tell-tale signs their batteries have been stolen – the markers being the brand of the batteries (Leoch lithium batteries, a brand widely used by major mobile operators and are not sold to the general public), and a price significantly lower than the average for Leoch lithium batteries which average between R25 000 and R30 000 per battery.
Consumers should be aware that the possession of black market batteries in their homes could yield consequences, as the ownership of such is considered possession of stolen property.
If you suspect your battery is stolen or are a witness to Cellular tower theft, report anonymously to the following:
SAPS: 08600 10111
Bidvest Protea Coin Hotline: 086 101 1721
See what Carte Blanche discovers together with Bidvest Protea Coin, Sunday 25 May at 19h00 on M-Net.