Fake Hitchhikers

They lure motorists with high fares only to disposes them of their vehicles once inside.

Since hunters have learnt to shoot without missing, birds have learned to fly without perching or vice versa. Since birds have learnt to fly without perching, hunters have learned to shoot without missing. Thieves come up with new pranks everyday as old ones are discovered. The latest fruit of their fertile imagination is to pretend to be travelling, stop a vehicle and propose a high price but say they have some luggage in the quarter and when the driver goes to pick up the luggage, he is over powered and the vehicle seized from him or her.

This reporter was witness to a macabre scene which could have ended deadly had it not been for the timely intervention of a passer-by who spilled the beans. On Friday November 2, the reporter was driving to Yaounde when he was stopped by a young man around the ‘TEXACO Aeroport’ neighbourhood. He pretended to be a loader who was looking for a vehicle for a stranded Nigerian businessman who was traveling to Yaounde and that since the foreigner was not aware of the fare, he had asked him to pay FCFA 12000.

The only irk, he said was to collect some luggage from inside the quarter. While talking to the two crooks, a Good Samaritan passed from behind and indicated to the driver not to accept the offer, which he did despite the crooks proposing a higher fare of 20.000. After they left, the Good Samaritan moved up to me and said, never you accept their offer. “Vous ne les connaissez pas ? Ce sont des frappeurs”, he said in French. They target private vehicles especially if the driver is alone and never stop a commercial vehicles, he added.

He narrated that when someone falls into their trap, they take you to an uninhabited area of the town where they over power the car owners and make away with the vehicle. The area ‘TEXACO aeroport’ in notorious for bike theft as many commercial bike riders are known to have lost their bikes and sometimes their lives to these men of the underworld. Now they are stepping up the game targeting vehicles and by-standers confirmed that many motorists especially women have be disposed of their vehicles around this neighborhood. Motorists are therefore advised to beware of the fake hitchhikers.



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