A Mutare man appeared in court early this week facing extortion charges after he allegedly threatened to cause the deportation of a British national using a forged letter bearing Minister of State for Presidential Affairs, Didymus Mutasa’s signature.
Booker Fungai Chinamasa (27) of Plot 1 Lusmore Herd Farm in Rusape is alleged to have committed the offence at Wise Owl Motel in Mutare on November 20 this year.
Allegations are that on November 19, Chinamasa approached Abbas Macky through a friend identified as Mudassa Khan at a local hotel and threatened to cause his deportation accusing him of being an illegal diamond dealer.
He also allegedly accused Macky of being closely linked to rebels in West Africa.
Chinamasa allegedly demanded a $5 000 bribe to stop the deportation. The following day, police set a trap where Chinamasa was caught red-handed receiving $1 000 from Khan inside a hotel room.
Part of the trap money was marked. Police later searched the hotel room where Chinamasa was booked and recovered three copies of the purported arrest and deportation orders bearing Mutasa’s forged signature.
Chinamasa was not asked to plead when he appeared before Mutare magistrate Fabian Feshete yesterday.
The State said it will only consider his bail application following submissions by Chinamasa’s lawyer Mareyanadzo Muchabaya today.
Public prosecutor Mike Tembo had opposed bail arguing that Chinamsa was a flight risk.