Woman who reported 'fake hijacking' on Twitter is released on bail
A 29-year-old woman who took to social media to post about being kidnapped and hijacked has been released on R2,000 bail.
Phindile Kunene appeared briefly in the Protea magistrate's court on Monday charged with contravention of section 9 of the Commissioners of Oath Act — making a false statement under oath.
Last week, Kunene claimed she had been hijacked and kidnapped, prompting a multidisciplinary police and emergency service search. Kunene, who was posting updates on social media, claimed she was texting from the boot of the car, where her hijackers had locked her, and was being taken to an unknown location.
“I'll update you till I'm no more...” read one of the posts, made shortly before 9pm.
Her post was followed by more updates from her, a location including her car’s number plate and updates of how her battery was getting flat. She also claimed the hijackers were fighting over which of them would rape her.
On Thursday, Kunene went to the police station to report the alleged hijacking and kidnapping.
According to the police, in her statement, given under oath, Kunene described how on Wednesday evening her vehicle was taken by unknown men in Mohlakeng, Randfontein. She said she was placed inside the car's boot as the hijackers drove around with her.
Gauteng police spokesperson Capt Mavela Masondo said it emerged later that Kunene confessed that she was never kidnapped. She was arrested on that day for perjury, defeating the ends of justice and fraud.
The NPA's Gauteng regional spokesperson said the court matter had been postponed to June 18 for further investigation.