MARONDERA — Eight members of a Macheke family who allegedly destroyed their neighbour’s tobacco crop following a land dispute appeared in court on Monday charged with malicious damage to property.
Report by Jairos Saunyama
The court heard that the brothers, Kingstone Mapfeka (75), Amos Mapfeka (52), Maxmose Mapfeka (62), Wonder Mapfeka (58), Bigboy Mapfeka (48), Benson Mapfeka (82),Muzirwa Mapfeka (65), Douglas Mapfeka (72) and one Mubaeni Ruza (51), all from Mapfeka village in Macheke — destroyed Ngoni Mashinga’s one hectare tobacco crop on November 13 2012.
The value of the tobacco was not given in court as the State is still awaiting estimate reports from the Agritex office.
Prosecutor Emmanuel Dera told the court that on November 13 and 17 last year, the suspects teamed up with others who are still at large and ploughed down Mashinga’s tobacco arguing that the land belonged to them.
Mashinga then reported the matter to police, leading to the suspects’ arrest.
Marondera magistrate Tendai Muchini deferred the case to Friday for judgment after all the suspects had pleaded guilty to the charge.
Meanwhile, a Marondera farm manager and his two farm security guards were on Monday slapped with an effective six- month jail term each for stealing 10 bales of ungraded tobacco worth $1 400 from their employer.
The trio appeared before the same magistrate who initially sentenced them to 12 months in prison each before three months were set aside on condition of good behaviour.
Muchini also suspended another three months on condition the trio paid restitution by September 30 this year. The court heard that on March 18 this year, Joseph Khumbula connived with two security guards Shame Shuwella and Norman Mandeya and stole the tobacco from Daskop Farm and sold it at Tobacco Sales Floor in Harare.
The matter only came to light after a whistleblower alerted the general manager Brian Bhunu, leading to the trio’s arrest.