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Two Durban-based nurses have been arrested after one of them allegedly used the bank card of a deceased Covid-19 victim to make personal purchases.

The men, aged 40 and 45, are from St Augustine’s Hospital and an unnamed private hospital in Umhlanga respectively, police spokesperson Colonel Thembeka Mbele said.

“It is alleged that the complainant, who is the owner of Auto Engineering on Sydney Road in Umbilo, has a business partner who was admitted to St Augustine’s Hospital. It is alleged that they have a joint business account.

“According to the complainant, he noticed that his partner’s card was being used while he lay in hospital and it continued to be used even after he had passed away. It is alleged, according to the bank statement, [that] one withdrawal was made at St Augustine’s Hospital.”

Mbele said video footage at the hospital was not clear enough to ascertain who the perpetrator was.

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However, the investigating officer continued with his investigation.

“He visited one of the stores where purchases were made with the card. He went to Glenwood Spar and their video footage confirmed that the card was used by [the 40-year-old].

“He was dressed in full uniform. The accused was arrested and some of the goods he purchased were recovered. He said the card was with his friend [the 45-year-old]. He too was arrested, and other goods purchased by him were also recovered.”

Mbele said the 40-year-old was a “repeat offender who has been arrested for other cases of theft and fraud”.

“He is also wanted by the Bellville police in Cape Town for a case of fraud. [The other accused] has also previously been arrested for a case of fraud.”

Mbele said the PIN of the bank card was allegedly saved on the deceased’s cellphone.

“The phone was recovered at a second-hand cellphone shop in Point Road.”

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