A Bulawayo man was last Thursday slapped with an effective 15-month jail-term after masquerading as a police officer and arresting a resident whom he cheated of $150 and two cellphones.
Horod Nachi pleaded not guilty to extortion charges, but was convicted when he appeared before Bulawayo magistrate Merlyn Mutshina.
The magistrate sentenced him to 24 months in jail and suspending nine months on condition of good behaviour.
The court heard that on February 11 at 9:31pm the complainant, Knowledge Ncube, parked his vehicle at corner Jason Moyo and 6th Avenue in the city while talking on his cellphone.
Nachi, who was in the company of two other suspects who are still at large, approached him.
Nachi produced a police identity card and told Ncube that he was under arrest for parking the vehicle at a wrong place and communicating while driving.
One of Nachis colleagues ordered Ncube out of the vehicle and handcuffed him.
The three ordered Ncube to enter his vehicle and they drove him towards traffic polices Drill Hall Station, but did not get into the station.
They further drove towards the Vehicle Inspection Deport in the pretext they were impounding the vehicle.
At the VID, they parked the vehicle outside and asked Ncube if he had money on him.
Ncube told them he only had $50 which they said was insufficient to cover the spot fine.
They later drove his vehicle to his home where they extorted $100 from him and also took his two cellphones.
They drove back to town with him saying they were taking him to traffic police station at Drill Hall for the spot fine payment. They stopped the vehicle at the corner of Herbert Chitepo Street and 10th Avenue where they threatened him before getting away with his money and cellphones.
On February 13, Ncube identified Nachi in the city and made a report to the police leading to his arrest.
The total value of the extorted money and property is $366 and nothing was recovered.