Wednesday, 4 March 2020

TWO COPS, THE BRAINS BEHIND US$20 000 THEFT


TWO police officers and their civilian accomplice were yesterday dragged to court charged with theft.

The trio of Kelvin Gwai 29, Simbarashe Sibanda, 38, and Tonderai Shenje 36, was not asked to plead when they appeared before Harare magistrate Rumbidzai Mugwagwa as the complainant had showed an intention of withdrawing the matter.

The complainant is Simbarashe Gwamure, 38, who owns Autovit Investments company based in Mutare and is in the business of cellphones and laptops. 

Gwamure has a business partner Edwin Makonese who is based in Harare whom he assigned to ask for quotations from different cellphone and laptop dealing companies in South Africa and Dubai such that they would import the goods.

On February 2, the court heard that Gwamure sent his employee Gwai, to take US$101 000 to Harare which was to be handed over to Makonese.

On February 3, whilst in possession of the money, Gwai is alleged to have hatched a plan to steal part of the money that he had given by his employer and called one Detective Sergeant Pakati who is still at large.

The two met at Roadport in Harare and the two connived to steal the money and enlisted the services of Sibanda who is a cop stationed at Commercial Crimes Division Northern Region and is an acquaintance to Pakati. 

Pakati then called Sibanda and Shenje who both agreed to meet the two at Roadport.

While they were waiting for the two police officers, Paketi hired a taxi where he and Gwai boarded and while in the taxi, Gwaai pulled out US$20 000 which he handed over to Paketi.

They then instructed the taxi driver to drive to a place they would meet Sibanda and Shenje.

When the four met, they all got into a taxi and to cover up for the theft, they went to CCD where they opened a docket against Gwai for violating the exchange control act.

Gwai in turn called Jaison Makore informing him that he had been arrested and he instructed him to collect a bag that he had and hand it over to Makonese who was given the rest of the money, excluding the US$20000 he had pulled out.

On February 4, Gwai was taken to court purporting that he had been found in possession of US$500 and RTGS$100.

On February 4, detectives received information of the deal the four had made and arrested Gwai who admitted that he had committed the offence and implicated his accomplices.

Shenje was arrested and US$1100 and RTGS$100 was recovered from his house. Shenje led to the arrest of Sibanda from whom US$175 was recovered.

Invetsigations revealed that Shenje had prepared a state outline indicating that Gwai had violated the Exchange Control Act but nothing like that ever happened.

Lancelot Mutsokoti appeared for the State. H Metro

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