GWERU – Vincent Chikombe, a former public prosecutor based at Kwekwe Magistrates’ Court who is currently serving a two-year jail term for criminal abuse of office, was back in the dock facing a similar charge.
Chikombe appeared before Gweru magistrate Kudakwashe Canady facing a fresh charge of receiving a $1 700 bribe from an accused person between June and July last year.
The matter was postponed to today after Chikombe, who is denying the charge, asked for more time to make his application for discharge.
The State case is that on February 14, 2011, the complainant, Phillip Mitela, was fined $500 for gold theft.
The court also ordered Mitela to pay restitution of $2 400 to the Clerk of Court by March 31 last year.
When Mitela failed to pay the money within the stipulated time, the deadline was extended to June 30, 2011.
On June 29, 2011, Mitela went to court with $1 200, which he intended to pay but was allegedly intercepted by Chikombe who collected the money and promised to bring him the receipt later.
On July 4 that same year, Chikombe called Mitela and advised him to bring an additional $300 which he also allegedly pocketed.
On July 18, the court issued a warrant of arrest for Mitela accusing him of defying a court order.
However, Chikombe again asked him to bring an additional $200, which the latter converted to his own use, bringing the total to $1 700.
On August 22, Mitela was arrested and detained at Kwekwe Prison where he was only released a week later after paying the full restitution.
Soon after his release, Mitela told police Chikombe had swindled him of $1 700 through misrepresentation, leading to the court official’s arrest.
Yeukai Mugumba prosecuted.