BY Richard Muponde
TWO detectives and a civilian have been arrested for stealing US$23 000 from a Mutare businessman.
The trio was arrested over the weekend after the complainant Simbarashe Gwamure, who owns Autovit Investments Company which is in the business of buying and selling cellphones and laptops, discovered the theft.
Efforts to get a comment from the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) spokesperson Detective Inspector Portia Chinho were fruitless as she was said to be out of office and her cellphone was unreachable.
However, sources said the matter was being investigated under case number IR020251.
According to police records, the complainant Gwamure got a contract to supply laptops and cellphones in Mutare.
He contacted his business partner Edwin Makonese of Greendale in Harare and assigned him to take quotations from companies in South Africa and Dubai.
Makonese got the quotations and advised Gwamure.
On February 2 at around 11pm while in Mutare, complainant assigned Calvin Gwai, his employee, to take US$101 000 to Makonese in Harare for the importation of the goods.
However, on February 4, while still in possession of the money, Gwai hatched a plan to steal from the complainant and contacted Detective Sergeant Paketi at CID Central Firearm Registry, CID Headquarters, who is still at large and is known to a witness Jaison Makore, to advise him of the plan. Paketi then contacted Sibanda and Shenje and proceeded to Harare Roadport Bus Terminus where they met Gwai and Makore upon arrival from Mutare.
The accused persons took US$23 100 from the US$101 000 which they shared among themselves and handed over the balance to Sibanda who gave it to Makonese.
To cover up for the offence, Sibanda, Shenje and Paketi arrested Gwai and detained him at Harare Central Police Station.
The following day before taking him to court, they opened a docket under the Exchange Control Act at Harare Central Police Station CR 187/02/20 purporting that US$500 and $100 were the only amounts recovered.
They handed Gwai to court where he was remanded to February 20 on $ 100 bail.
Gwai advised Gwamure that he had been arrested.
However, Gwamure suspected that he could have been duped and reported the matter to the police.
Detectives picked Gwai, whom they interviewed and he admitted to have connived with the other four accused persons. Follow-ups were made, leading to the arrest of Shenje and the recovery of US$11 000 including US$500 said to be change and $100 which was at his house. Shenje was arrested through Sibanda’s indications and US$175 was recovered from his house.