EIGHT aspiring nursing students were duped of close to US$8 000 in a fraudulent recruitment scheme by two suspected fraudsters.
Effort Chirandata and Martha Chitumba appeared before Harare magistrate Dennis Mangosi charged with fraud.
Chirandata, who was represented by Malvern Mapako, was granted US$100 bail, while Chitumba was remanded in custody because the State believes she is withholding her true identity which the police are still verifying.
The State also opposed bail stating that Chitumba is known for changing addresses and phone numbers, as she destroyed her sim card when the investigation started.
The court heard that the two connived to defraud desperate aspiring nursing students seeking enrolment at Sally Mugabe Hospital.
The State said Chirandata lured them and referred them to Chitumba as a link to securing training vacancies.
Between January and August last year, Chirandata convinced them to pay US$1 000 each for enrolment.
Chitumba confirmed the deal was genuine whenever she was called and the two would share the money.
To maintain full control of the project, Chirandata allegedly opened and administered a WhatsApp group using her daughter’s number.
On January 6, Chirandata sent a message in the WhatsApp group advising the aspiring students to go to Sally Mugabe Hospital on January 8.
However, Chitumba was nowhere to be found when the victims went to the hospital.
When they contacted her, she informed them that there had been some challenges, and then became evasive and they reported the matter to the police.
The victims lost US$7 780.